Eye Diseases Leading to Blindness


People often ask me what I can see.  In daylight, if you can imagine a wall of fog, I cannot see most objects or colors behind it. Some days the fog is denser than others. Reading is impossible unless I have a special magnifier that changes the color contrast of the background and letters. Colors are very difficult to differentiate, so I commonly ask for help especially when purchasing clothing.

In subdued lighting such as my home, my vision is glared and hazy. Seeing a dropped item on the floor is very difficult. Cooking in the kitchen is difficult when selecting the options on the appliances. The stove, oven, microwave, dishwasher, washing machine, and dryer - I cannot see the keypad or digital read out. I have found by applying “bumps” onto the keypads help me select the mode I need to use. Night vision I can only see a light fixture. TV programs are distorted to a point that people or objects look like a Picasso painting.

When using my computer, I have a special software program that magnifies the monitor screen. It has many features including audio feedback. Navigating with my white cane helps locate objects blocking my path, stairs, curbs, doors and walls.

More than 3 million Americans today are affected with vision impairment. It is expected to increase to 5 million in 2030; to approximately 9 million in 2050*.

The majority of our vision loss is due to various eye diseases, accidental injuries, or surgeries. Get a yearly eye exam with an optometrist, or low vision specialist. If the disease is diagnosed early, one could stand a chance of treatment to help slow the process of blindness.



Below are some of the major eye diseases leading to blindness:


Retinitis Pigmentosa**

Macular Degeneration**





Optic Neuritis**



* According to a research study in 2010 by the National Eye Institute.

** More information seen on healthline.com