Advanced low-vision aid can help around 6 mn people in India: Expert

Kolkata : Almost nine million people in India are now visually impaired, which is the highest number over the past two decades, but six million of them can be helped with advanced low-vision aids, according to an expert

"For the visually impaired people, the world is a blur. Almost six million out of nine million visually impaired people can benefit from advanced hi-quality telescopic low vision aids (bioptics)," Henry A. Greene, attached to the department of ophthalmology at the School of Medicine, University of North Carolina said during a conference, 'Eye Tech 2018' here.

Greene said low vision cannot be totally rectified even after treatment. So the devices prescribed to such individuals should be such that these enhance their confidence and make them feel "connected".

According to an optometrist Subhshish Chaudhuri, it is people's constant ignorance of low vision symptoms that leads to complete blindness. One should not ignore symptoms like blurred vision, headache or glare sensitivity.

Macular Degeneration, Glaucoma, Diabetic Retinopathy are some of the common causes of low vision. Optical devices like magnifiers and spectacles are common visual aids.

Non-optical aids like additional illumination can be helpful for some and for some cases individuals may need hats to cut out the glares.

A study shows that almost 30 per cent of visually impaired becomes depressed as they stop doing things. Hence, counselling may be of great help.