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Using Computers While Living With Blindness
blindnessTwo blind women living with blindness provide computer training and job services to people with disabilities at a nonprofit called Donka. Ann Byrne and Kimberly Delaney in the suburbs of Chicago are helping others succeed. Byrne lost her vision from congenital glaucoma. Delaney lost all vision in one eye from injuries sustained during a Vietnam War massacre; she went completely blind because of leukemia, which may be the result of Agent Orange exposure.

"Nobody knows your potential," Byrne says. "You have to work for it. Here at Donka, we give our students tools."

Please contact SDCB if you are struggling with vision loss or blindness. We offer several programs that can improve your life quality.

"Blindness, disabilities no obstacle to computer use at Wheaton nonprofit"

Posted in Blindness | View Post
Helping the Visually Impaired
visually impairedBlind and visually impaired people benefit from community support. Those who are living with eye diseases and conditions in the Cedar Rapids, Iowa, now have support groups. Such residents living in the area can join the Blindness Support Group and meet once a month to learn how to overcome barriers specific to their disability.

"When people go blind — and by that I mean the whole range of vision loss — they feel very isolated," said Jonathan Ice, the group's founder. "They feel like they're the only one going through this.

If you are visually impaired, then San Diego Center for the Blind can help you in several ways. Please contact us to learn more.

"Cedar Rapids group formed to support blind, visually impaired residents"

Posted in Blindness and Vision Impairment | View Post
Cataract Surgery for Animals
cataractAnimals are susceptible to vision problems, just like humans. A gorilla named Leslie residing at the San Diego Zoo recently underwent cataract surgery. The three-year-old gorilla is the first at the zoo ever to receive lens replacement surgery. The procedure was conducted by a University of California at San Diego surgical team.

"In babies, they've demonstrated that, if you do not correct cataracts quickly, the brain actually starts shutting sight to the affected eye," said San Diego Zoo associate veterinarian Dr. Meredith Clancy. "Gorillas are very social and, in the future, she will need to find a mate, she will want to raise a family. We just didn't want this to get in the way of her chances to live a full, happy life."

If you need assistance for vision loss, please contact SDCB to learn more about our programs and services.

"Leslie, a Safari Park gorilla, undergoes cataract surgery"

Posted in Blindness and Animals | View Post
January is Braille Literacy Month
BrailleOn top of Glaucoma Awareness Month, January is also Braille Literacy Month. We celebrate and honor the birthday of Louis Braille, who was born on January 4th, 1809, this month. January 4th was also National World Braille Day. Louis Braille was twelve years old when he discovered the braille code. In the 21st Century, new technology has allowed Braille to be more accessible for people living with blindness.

"You can create a document, you can go to the internet, you can check emails," says Zahia Althabata, Assistive Technology Instructor at East Texas Lighthouse for the Blind. "And you can download books to read."

Please contact SDCB if you need assistance with vision loss or blindness. We offer many innovative programs.

"Celebrating the 'code:' January is Braille Literacy Month"

Posted in Braille | View Post
EnChroma for Low Vision
low visionLow vision is any deterioration in one's sight that cannot be corrected by glasses or surgery. While the company EnChroma is known for its smart glasses for color blindness, they just released a new line for people living with low vision. The EnChroma® Lx Series will also assist people with age-related eye conditions.

The company will feature its new line at the Opti Munich 2020 International Trade Show for Optics and Design on January 10-12, 2020.

"Until now, the low vision options available to patients have been limited," said Mark Mattison-Shupnick, Master Optician and Vice President of Business Development for EnChroma. "EnChroma's new offering for low vision features a unique spectral filter that reduces the intensity of white light while transmitting colors up to two times brighter than an average lens. A patient using the new lens will experience superior glare reduction and comfort, as well as enhanced color and contrast, which can aid mobility and safety."

Are you struggling with vision loss or blindness? If so, then please reach out to SDCB at your earliest convenience.

"EnChroma Introduces Line of Lenses for Low Vision and Age-Related Eye Conditions"

Posted in Assistive and Vision Loss Technology and Products | View Post
Shedding Light on Glaucoma
glaucomaEven though millions of Americans have glaucoma, a condition that damages the optic nerve, most people are not aware they have the eye disease. It's no wonder that people often refer to the condition as the "sneak thief of sight." During National Glaucoma Awareness Month, it's vital to teach the general public about this disorder.

The majority of people fail to realize they have the condition until it is well-advanced. Peripheral vision is the first to worsen; however, "the visual acuity or sharpness of vision is maintained until late in the disease," according to the Glaucoma Research Foundation.

Please contact SDCB if vision rehabilitation programs can improve your life quality.

"Many Americans don't realize they're going blind"

Posted in Glaucoma | View Post
January is Glaucoma Awareness Month
glaucomaGlaucoma or the "sneak thief of sight" impacts more than 3.2 million Americans age 40 and over, according to estimates from the Prevent Blindness report, "Future of Vision: Forecasting the Prevalence and Costs of Vision Problems." Naturally, the number of people who will be affected will steadily increase in the years to come. January is National Glaucoma Awareness Month. This month, Prevent Blindness wants to educate the public about glaucoma and its risk factors. The organization also would like to share treatment options.

"The year 2020 is an ideal reminder for all of us to make the resolution today to save our vision for tomorrow," said Jeff Todd, president and CEO of Prevent Blindness. "By detecting vision problems and treating them early, including those from glaucoma, we can help to avoid significant vision impairment."

The San Diego Center for the Blind offers many programs to assist people living with vision loss and blindness. Please contact us to learn more.

"Glaucoma, "The Sneak Thief of Sight," Continues to Affect Vision of Millions of Americans"

Posted in Glaucoma | View Post
Library of Congress Increases Resources for the Blind
blindThe Library of Congress, the most important library in the U.S., announced a significant endowment in support of the National Library Service for the Blind and Print Disabled (NLS). It will allow the library to increase its resources and services for the blind and visually impaired.

“We are so excited to receive this generous gift from Dr. Diskin and honored by her recognition of our work,” NLS Director Karen Keninger said. “It will allow us to advance our efforts to digitize NLS’s world-class braille music collection much faster and more accurately than we had ever anticipated – a real benefit to the students, teachers, performers and music lovers who use our braille materials.”

SDCB can assist you or a loved one with vision loss or blindness. Please contact us to learn more.

“Library of Congress Announces Major Endowment For The Blind and Print Disabled”

Posted in Resources for Blind and Visually Impaired | View Post
Blind Artist Creates Masterpieces
blindIn January, a legally blind artist’s works will be on display at the Poway Center for the Performing Arts. This will be the first time that Therese Verner will show her art in San Diego. Verner has myopic macular degeneration in her right eye and glaucoma. Despite being legally blind, she was able to teach herself how to paint.

The exhibit, “Art to Brighten Your Life,” will open on Saturday, Jan. 4, 2020.

Please reach out to SDCB if you would like to learn more about our vision rehabilitation programs.

“Legally blind artist seeks to ‘Brighten Your Life’ with PCPA art exhibit”

Posted in Arts and Culture | View Post
Preventing Blindness on December 31st
blindnessNew Year’s Eve is just around the corner, which means that countless bottles of champagne will be opened around the world. We hope that you understand the dangers that corks can pose to your eyes. Always point the champagne bottle away from your face when opening. A champagne cork travels at around 50 mph and can shatter glass. If it hits you in the eye, it can cause abrasion, intraocular bleeding, cataract, glaucoma, and retinal detachment, which can lead to blindness.

We invite you to contact SDCB if you require vision loss rehabilitation or assistance with blindness.

“Focus on Eyes: Popping a cork can cause blindness”

Posted in Advocacy and Events | View Post
Today Anchor On The Mend from Vision Loss
vision lossIf you watch the Today show, then you are familiar with the anchor Savannah Guthrie. You might be aware that she recently experienced severe eye trauma. Her retina was damaged when her 3-year-old son Charley stabbed her in the eye with a toy train.

Guthrie, 48, hoped to avoid surgery and vision loss, but laser treatments were unsuccessful, and doctors decided a full retinal surgery on her right eye was necessary.

“The retinal tear had deteriorated sharply, and I lost my vision,” said Guthrie. “And that’s what happens if you don’t fix this: You lose your sight.”

The San Diego Center for the Blind can help you or a loved one regain your independence. Our vision rehabilitation programs can improve your quality of life.

“Savannah Guthrie on Her Difficult Eye Surgery and ‘Challenging’ Recovery: ‘It’s Pretty Ghastly’”

Posted in Vision Loss | View Post
Foundation for Blind Children Prison Braille Program
BrailleBraille allows people living with vision loss and blindness to gain knowledge through reading. What many people who rely on Braille do not know is that prisoners in Arizona make many of the books available. The Foundation for Blind Children’s Prison Braille Program involves inmates who transcribe books into Braille.

The program certifies prisoners to transcribe Braille in order to create textbooks, tests, and quizzes for blind students in Arizona for free.

SDCB can assist you or a loved one with vision loss or blindness; please contact us to learn more.

“Braille Behind Bars: Blind Arizonans receive textbooks made by prisoners”

Posted in Braille | View Post
Navy Shines Light on Blindness
blindnessAccording to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), one in four adults or 61 million people in the United States are living with a disability. In October, Norfolk Naval Shipyard (NNSY) joined the country in celebrating National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM). The NNSY hosted two events that focused on “invisible disabilities” such as vision loss and blindness.

Guest speaker Dr. Debbie Pfeiffer, Director of Outreach Programs, for the Virginia School of the Deaf and the Blind, discussed the Courtesy Rules of Blindness published by the National Foundation of the Blind. The handbook offers tips for sighted people to reference when interacting with a person who is blind or vision impaired. Here’s an example:

“Understand – I may not recognize your voice. If I don’t know you well, please say, ‘Hi, it’s Sue.’” Another was, “Experience – I probably have years of experience using nonvisual techniques to live my life. Feel free to ask me how I do something, or how best you can assist me if help is needed.”

Please contact SDCB if you are living with vision loss or blindness. We have programs that can improve your quality of life.

“Norfolk Naval Shipyard Disability Awareness Committee ERG Shines a Light on Invisible Disabilities”

Posted in Blindness | View Post
Tattoos and Vision Loss
vision lossThe Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital (RVEEH) warns about a link between tattoos and a severe eye condition that can lead to vision loss. Uveitis affects the inner structures of the eye; it can cause pain, redness, and blurry vision. Associate Professor Lyndell Lim says:

"The public health message should be to consider your vision in addition to other potential health risks when getting a tattoo and if you do have symptoms of uveitis, act quickly to seek specialist care."

Please contact SDCB if you require assistance for vision loss. We offer many effective programs.

"Eye Experts Warn Of Link Between Tattoos And Vision Loss"

Posted in Vision Loss | View Post
Marvel Comic Book in Braille
BrailleMarvel's Heroes Project's "Unstoppable Adonis" is a comic book about a young high school football running back named Adonis. The young athlete is entirely blind; and, the comic book is fittingly available in Braille.

"What caught our attention about Adonis' story is that a whole community came together around him to support his dream - and that he's doing things off the field to show that visual disability doesn't hold people back from making their dreams reality," Liza Wyles, Executive Producer of Marvel's Hero Project and Director, Development for Marvel New Media.

If your quality of life is suffering due to vision loss, then we invite you to contact SDCB.

"Inside MARVEL's First Braille Comic, Inspired by Football Player with Blindness"

Posted in Blind Library - Books | View Post
Playing Hockey with Blindness
blindnessCarl Soderberg plays for the Arizona Coyotes of the National Hockey League. What makes Soderberg unique is that he's legally blind in his left eye. His vision was compromised in 2006 when an opponent's stick hit his eye and detached his retina leaving him living with blindness.

"It was a little different on the eyes, I was scared, afraid to get hit again," he said. "It took me a couple years to fully get back."

San Diego Center for the Blind offers several vision rehabilitation programs. Please contact us to learn more.

"Coyotes' Soderberg thriving despite blindness in left eye"

Posted in Blindness | View Post
A Daily Schedule in Braille
BrailleVisually impaired students may soon benefit from a Braille daily schedule. It was created by the 3D Tech Doves, an all-girls team from Christine Donnell School of the Arts, by using 3D printed plastic letters and number tiles. They call their invention the Teacher Classroom Kit. It’s "usable to visually impaired students so they can be more independent," Amber McVey, the girls mentor said.

"I feel really good, I think we did a really good job and helped a lot of people," Hailey Harwell, member of the 3D Tech Doves said.

SDCB offers many programs that can significantly assist people living with visual impairments. Please contact us to learn more.

“Boise all-girls 3D printing team wins competition for creating a Braille daily schedule”

Posted in Braille | View Post
Field Hockey Player Determined to Play Following Vision Loss
vision lossIn November, a British Olympic field hockey hopeful sustained a significant injury when he was hit in the face by a ball. The damage resulted in vision loss in his left eye. After surgery and seeing eye specialists, Sam Ward is committed to playing for his country in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

"Reports that I am retiring are completely not true and never were true," Ward said. "It's rumor mill... I do have some sight loss in my left eye but I still have peripheral vision and a fully functioning right eye."

If you require assistance for vision loss or blindness, then please contact SDCB to learn more about our programs.

“Olympic hopeful vows to play field hockey again after ball fractures his face, causes vision loss”

Posted in Vision Loss | View Post
Preventing River Blindness
blindnessOnchocerciasis is a neglected tropical disease (NTD) caused by the parasitic worm Onchocerca volvulus. It is transmitted through bites by blackflies and it is common in Africa. The worm attacks the eyes and causes visual impairment or blindness. The World Health Organization (WHO) would like to eradicate this preventable and treatable condition by 2030.

Researchers at the University of Notre Dame conducted a study that involved mathematic modeling which found that a combination of mass drug distribution and removing vegetation may be the most effective method of curbing transmission.

“Modeling is a powerful tool to synthesize myriad information about parasite transmission,” said lead author Edwin Michael, professor in the Department of Biological Sciences at Notre Dame. “Once we obtain a working model, we have the capability to do forecasting into the future, and we can also use the available short-term, limited data to present decision makers with new information that is not otherwise available.”

SDCB offers several vision rehabilitation services that can improve your quality of life. Please contact us to learn more.

“Study: Transmission of river blindness may be reduced when vegetation is removed”

Posted in Blindness | View Post
Technology Helps People With Low Vision
low visionLow vision is defined as significant visual impairment that can't be corrected with glasses, contact lenses, medication, or eye surgery. However, technology is allowing people living with visual impairments, IrisVision utilizes a virtual reality headset and smartphone to helps users living with low vision see things better.

"This technology that now is available is so exciting, to provide to this capability of using one device for multiple distances and for patients to be independent again," said Dr. Nancy Amir, a low-vision optometrist.

San Diego Center for the Blind can assist you or a loved one with low vision. Please contact us to learn more.

“IrisVision low-vision glasses help people see again”

Posted in Low Vision | View Post
Vitamin B3 and Vision Loss
vision lossOver-the-counter niacin or Vitamin B3 can cause vision loss if it is taken in high doses. Researchers at New York Eye and Ear Infirmary of Mount Sinai (NYEE) found that Vitamin B3 can result in a rare toxic reaction known as niacin-induced cystoid maculopathy (a type of retinal swelling). Findings published in the fall issue of the Journal of VitreoRetinal Diseases suggest that discontinuing use can reverse the effects of retinal swelling.

"People often live by the philosophy that if a little bit is good, more should be better. This study shows how dangerous large doses of a commonly used over-the-counter medication can be," said lead investigator Richard Rosen, MD, Chief of Retina Services at NYEE and the Mount Sinai Health System. "People who depend on vision for their livelihood need to realize there could be long-lasting consequences from inadvertent overdosing on this vitamin."

If vision loss is impacting your life, please contact SDCB to learn more about our services and programs.

“Severe Vision Loss From Niacin (Vitamin B3) Can Be Reversed”

Posted in Vision Loss | View Post
Dry Eyes Can Cause Blindness
blindnessIf left untreated, dry eye symptoms can result in damage to the cornea and lead to vision loss and blindness for you or a loved one. The Mayo Clinic states that dry eyes are caused by either too little tear production or an increase in tear evaporation. A myriad of causes can lead to dry eyes: lupus, diabetes, and rheumatoid arthritis, and prescription drugs. Fortunately, specific lifestyle changes and prescription eye drops can counter dryness and prevent permanent damage to the eyes that can cause blindness.

People who wear contact lenses and women over the age of 50 at the most considerable risk of dry eyes.

Please contact SDCB if you require assistance for vision loss or blindness. We offer several programs that can improve your life quality.

“Why you should take dry eye symptoms seriously”

Posted in Blindness | View Post
Link between Eye Disease and Brain Degeneration
eye diseaseScientists from Singapore and the United States have discovered new evidence that there is a link between degeneration of the eye and brain. The researchers found that genetic variation at a beta-amyloid gene was significantly associated with increased risk of Primary Open Angle Glaucoma (POAG), a form of irreversible blindness worldwide. Moreover, the study confirmed a hypothesis that glaucoma may not just be an eye disease, but that it is linked to degeneration of the brain as well.

People living with vision loss or blindness are invited to contact San Diego Center for the Blind for assistance. We offer several programs that can help improve your quality of life.

“Researchers Find Link Between Eye Disease And Degeneration Of The Brain”

Posted in eye disease | View Post
November is Diabetic Eye Disease Awareness Month
eye diseaseDiabetes is one of the leading causes of eye disease in the United States. During Diabetic Eye Disease Awareness Month it is vital to inform the public about diabetes and vision loss, as well as the risk factors and treatment options. For more information on diabetic eye diseases, you can look at the “Diabetes and the Eyes” educational toolkit from Prevent Blindness. The toolkit includes fact sheets and infographics for you to share on social media.

SDCB offers many innovative visual rehabilitation programs; please contact us to learn more.

“Raising awareness for diabetic eye disease”

Posted in eye disease | View Post
Finding Permanent Therapeutics for Leading Cause of Blindness
blindnessAge-related macular degeneration (AMD) causes loss of central vision in the retina. AMD is one of the leading causes of blindness in the United States. Fortunately, researchers from Yale, MIT, and Harvard have discovered the cellular culprits of this incurable eye disease. The findings could lead to more permanent therapeutics for macular degeneration patients. The research was published in Nature Communications.

“It is the first time the human retinal cells have been sequenced at the single-cell level,” said Brian Hafler, assistant professor of ophthalmology and pathology at the Yale School of Medicine and co-senior author of the study. “We were able to look at each individual retinal cell’s RNA and how the expression of specific genes varies from other cells. We found which cells expressed the known genetic risk factors for macular degeneration. It’s exciting to be able to assign the AMD-associated genes with the specific cell types they act on.”

If you are struggling with vision loss, then you can benefit from the programs we offer at SDCB. Please contact us to learn more.

“Yale-MIT-Harvard collaboration maps out cellular culprits of blindness”

Posted in Researchers and Leaders in Eye Disease | View Post
Multiple Sclerosis and Vision Loss
vision lossA team of researchers at Johns Hopkins Medicine combined high-resolution eye scans and genetic tests to identify three genes involved in the complement immune pathway that is linked to more rapid degeneration of nervous tissue in the eye and loss of sight. Mutations in genes are associated with a higher likelihood of more severe forms of multiple sclerosis (MS) and are linked to faster vision loss.

"We believe that our study opens up a new line of investigation targeting complement genes as a potential way to treat disease progression and nerve cell death," said Peter Calabresi, MD, the study's senior leader and a professor at Johns Hopkins University

SDCB can help you or a loved one regain some independence. Please contact us to learn more about our vision rehabilitation programs.

"Mutations in 3 Genes Linked to Vision Loss and MS Severity in Hopkins Study"

Posted in Vision Loss | View Post
New Imaging Technique for Detecting Blindness
blindnessNew research, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, conducted by researchers from Baylor College of Medicine and UT Health's McGovern Medical School, highlights the development and application of new imaging methods for viewing retinal cells. The research teams were interested in retinal cilia, hair-like fibers that work as light. Higher-resolution viewing techniques allow scientists to see the internal structure of healthy and diseased retinal cilia.

"There is a large group of diseases called ciliopathies that are caused by genetic defects in the components of the structure of cilia. One [sic] the most common symptoms of ciliopathies is retinal degeneration and blindness, such as seen in retinitis pigmentosa and Bardet-Biedl syndrome." – Dr. Theodore G. Wensel, corresponding author, professor and Robert A. Welch Chair in Chemistry in the Department of Biochemistry at Baylor

If you are struggling with vision loss or blindness, then please contact SDCB to learn more about or programs.

"New imaging methods provide unprecedented close-up view of cilia linked to blindness"

Posted in Research and Medical Advancements | View Post
Screening for Blindness in Young People
blindnessThe Plusoptix is a noninvasive vision screener that can check young people's eyes for refractive errors and eye misalignment in just under a minute. If further review is necessary, the device will instruct the subject to see an eye doctor. Last year, the tool helped detect blindness in the left eye of a first-grader named Elliott Wasem. An eye doctor discovered that Elliot has optic nerve edema: a leaky blood vessel causing swelling and blindness.

"I was thinking glasses might be the worst case scenario," said Christy Wasem, Elliott's mother and a kindergarten teacher at Hellgate Elementary. "We had no idea."

Please contact SDCB if you would like assistance with vision loss or blindness. We offer several innovative programs that can help.

"Vision screenings helped spot blindness in Missoula kindergartner"   

Posted in Blindness | View Post
Learning About Diseases that can Cause Blindness
blindnessVision is a precious gift that too many of us take for granted. There are several things we can do differently to protect against blindness, including prioritizing a healthy diet, exercise, and avoiding alcohol and smoking. The five most common causes of blindness are diabetic retinopathy, age-related macular degeneration, cataracts, glaucoma, and eye injury or trauma.

"The leading causes of blindness and low vision in the United States are primarily age-related eye diseases, says Barbara Horn, a Doctor of Optometry and president of the American Optometric Association. "The potential to rehabilitate vision will depend on the diagnosis, degree of diagnosis and length of diagnosis," she adds. Horn also notes that "early intervention via regular visits with a doctor of optometry is key to prevent visual impairment and optimize early treatment, if needed."

If you require assistance for vision loss or blindness, then we invite you to reach out to SDCB to learn more about our programs.

“5 Diseases That Can Lead to Blindness”

Posted in Eye Health and Preventing Disease | View Post
Blindness Tied to Common Sleep Disorder
blindnessIn the United States, the lives of more than 18 million adults are impacted by sleep apnea. Scientists had already linked the sleep condition to several health problems, but researchers now associate the disorder with blindness. Severe sleep apnea could heighten people's risk of diabetic macular edema: a disease that causes vision loss or blindness.

"Based on these results, we hope that more medical professionals will approach sleep apnea as a risk factor for diabetic macular edema," lead researcher Juifan Chiang said in a press release. "This could allow for earlier medical intervention so patients can keep more of their vision and preserve their overall health as much as possible."

San Diego Center for the Blind specializes in helping people living with vision loss. Please reach out to us to learn more.

"Sleep Apnea Effects Linked To Blindness"

Posted in Blindness | View Post
Preventable Vision Loss Around the Globe
vision lossSome 2.2 billion people are living with eye conditions and visual impairment today, according to the World Health Organization’s (WHO) World Report On Vision. The UN health agency warns that the need for eye care is increasing as exponentially more people are expected to suffer from vision loss in the coming years. WHO suggests that lifestyle choices are a driving force behind staggering visual impairment rates.

"Eye conditions and vision impairment are widespread, and far too often they still go untreated," said Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General. "It is unacceptable that 65 million people are blind or have impaired sight when their vision could have been corrected overnight with a cataract operation, or that over 800 million struggle in everyday activities because they lack access to a pair of glasses."

If you are struggling with low vision or blindness, then SDCB can help in several ways. Please contact us to learn more.

"One billion people have preventable or unaddressed vision loss"

Posted in Blindness and Society | View Post
Author Explains that Blindness Makes You Vulnerable
blindnessNew York City is a well-planned city, but it can still prove challenging to navigate, especially if you are living with blindness. Author Elizabeth Savage says that you are vulnerable when you can’t see. However, she shares with readers that memory and mental tricks helped her manage with poor vision. Then, vision loss progressed to blindness; she had multiple surgeries to treat her uveitis, an inflammatory disease of the eye.

The uveitis cleared up, but later she developed cataracts. At the time of her last cataract surgery, she had 20/200 vision. Fortunately, the operation was a success, and her vision was restored.

Please reach out to San Diego Center for the blind to learn more about our services.

“I Went Blind. I Still Owned Manhattan”

Posted in Living Independently Skills and Attitude | View Post
Eating Healthy to Prevent Vision Loss
vision lossWhat we eat can have a significant impact on our health. Those who eat more nutrient-rich foods benefit in several ways. While genetics play a role in causing vision loss, there is a growing body of evidence that suggests that what we eat can wreak havoc on our vision. Leafy greens, carrots, bell peppers, pumpkin, butternut squash, and turkey can help you with long-term eye health. Foods containing vitamins A, C, E, and zinc are beneficial to our eyes.

San Diego Center for the Blind can help you or a loved one with vision loss and blindness. Please contact us to learn more.

“6 Foods to Eat for Healthier Eyes and Better Vision”

Posted in Eye Health and Preventing Disease | View Post
Eye Drops May Reverse Vision Loss
vision lossAn Israeli company is working on eye drops that could reverse a common type of vision loss: farsightedness or the inability to see or read nearby objects. Research on the Israel-based Orasis, Pharmaceuticals, eye drops indicates that the eye drops improve farsightedness and are tolerable.

“We are very encouraged by the results,” said Elad Kedar, CEO of Orasis, “The results were great not only on the efficacy endpoints, but also on the safety and tolerability, so we are moving as quickly as possible into Phase 3.”

Please contact SDCB if you would like to learn more about our vision rehabilitation services. We have many programs that can improve your life quality.

“Eye Drops To Reverse Vision Loss One Step Closer To Market”

Posted in Vision Loss | View Post
Preventing Blindness on Halloween
blindnessEye injuries are leading causes of blindness and vision loss. With Halloween around the corner, it's vital that people of all ages protect their eyes from costume-related injuries. Cosmetic contact lenses and specific masks can hurt your eyes. Prevent Blindness offers several tips to safeguard your vision over the holiday, such as:

“Improper use of cosmetic lenses can lead to serious eye complications. These problems include bacterial infections, swelling, eye pain, sensitivity to light, conjunctivitis (pink eye), corneal scratches, corneal ulceration and even permanent loss of sight.”

San Diego Center for the Blind can significantly help people living with vision loss. Please contact us to learn more about our programs.

“Tips for Making Halloween Safe”

Posted in Blindness | View Post
Cooking Podcast for the Visually Impaired
visually impairedPerhaps you have heard of a PBS television program called “Cooking Without Looking.” The show features people who are visually impaired cooking their favorite recipes. Now the program is available via podcast. The “Cooking Without Looking TV Show Podcast” will allow more people to enjoy the series. The show’s creator, Renee Rentmeester, says:

“I wanted to create something that could help anyone no matter their race, gender, religion or economic status. I came up with blindness because it crosses all of those lines,’’ she said. “But, I didn’t know anyone who was blind. No one in my family is blind/visually impaired. That’s also part of the reason I started it. Most people don’t know people who are blind, and we could bring understanding to a whole group of people that many didn’t know, or understand.”

SDCB can help you or a loved one with vision loss; we offer several programs that help people regain their independence. Please contact us to learn more.

“Cooking show for visually impaired is now producing a podcast”

Posted in Visually Impaired | View Post
Preparing for Macular Degeneration
macular degenerationAge-related macular degeneration, or AMD, is a chronic disease that affects millions of people in the United States. In fact, AMD is the leading cause of vision loss among people age 50 or older. By 2020, an estimated 196 million people will be living with AMD, according to the BrightFocus Foundation. Cases vary in severity, and some men and women will require surgery.

Older adults must familiarize themselves with the symptoms, causes, and treatment options for age-related macular degeneration.

If you would like assistance with vision loss, then please contact SDCB. We offer many programs that can improve your life quality.

“A Patient's Guide to Macular Degeneration”

Posted in Eye Disease - Macular Degeneration | View Post
Braille UNO Cards
BrailleIn previous posts we wrote about Braille Bricks: Legos that have Braille on them. The company went a step further last month when it began offering building instructions for the visually impaired via Braille readers.

Now, the toy company Mattel is working on inclusivity. The company now offers a Braille deck of UNO cards. Developed in partnership with the National Federation of the Blind (NFB), UNO Braille makes the game accessible to blind and low-vision players.

"It's a sighted world, so it's important to have accessibility for the blind," said Raveena Alli. "But also to be able to pull out a deck of cards and say, 'Hey, there's Braille and print on this, do you wanna play?' And it will just be really fun."

At SDCB, we offer several vision rehabilitation programs that can improve quality of life for men and women living with vision loss. Please contact us to learn more.

“Mattel debuts first official Braille deck of UNO cards”

Posted in Braille | View Post
Spotting the Signs of Blindness
blindnessThe University of Wisconsin has a health program that aims to spot the signs of diabetes-related blindness early. The project, which involves the use of telemedicine, is headed by Dr. Yao Liu. Dr. Liu is a glaucoma specialist, eye surgeon and assistant professor at UW-Madison.

Early detection and treatment can decrease the risk of severe vision loss from diabetic eye disease by 90 percent, says Professor Liu. Diabetic eye disease is the leading cause of blindness among working age adults in America.

“I think there is so much new technology today. Telemedicine allows us to provide eye care using cameras, smart phones, all kinds of new technologies,” Liu said.

Please contact SDCB if you are experiencing vision loss. We offer many programs that can help improve life quality.

“Growing telehealth program is working to catch blindness early”

Posted in Blindness | View Post
This is Us Casts Blind Actor
blindThe hit NBC show “This Is Us” season 4 premiered on Tuesday, September 24. One of the new primary characters featured this season is a blind musician played by actor Blake Stadnik. Blind characters in television shows is not unheard of; however, it is rare that the actor cast to play this type of role is in fact blind in real life.

“It was an interesting casting process because we wanted to cast a blind actor," said showrunner Dan Fogelman. "We had started our casting process very early, even in our off-season. I was looking for a leading man who was without sight and who could be funny, charming, accessible, and sweet. One of the wonderful things about our casting department was it wasn't like they only found Blake. There were a bunch of really viable, wonderful casting choices that came through our casting department. Blake, when he came to us, was clearly the guy."

“This is Us” is not Stadnik’s first role as an actor on stage. He graduated from Penn State’s musical theater program. Since then, the young man has performed in several theater productions: Newsies, Sweeney Todd, 42nd Street and Guys and Dolls.

SDCB invites you to reach out if you would like assistance with vision loss or blindness. We offer several vision rehabilitation programs.

“Who Plays Jack Damon on This Is Us? All About Blake Stadnik, the Blind Actor in Season 4”

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Lack of education around what impacts eye health
A recent poll in the UK found that nearly 50% of people had little to no understanding of what nutrients and vitamins can impact eye health. Only 45% of those polled knew that diet can impact your vision. They also found that although the eye is the fastest moving muscle in the body with two million moving parts, most people take no preventative measures to protect their eyes. 

SDCB vision rehabilitation programs can help improve your quality of life. Please contact us to learn more.

Half of UK Adults Have No Idea Diet Can Affect Eyesight
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Glaucoma risks and symptoms
Your risk of developing Glaucoma increases after the age of 40. But do you know the early signs and symptoms of the disease? 

Including loss of vision in one or both eyes, cloudy vision, and pain or pressure, this list goes over six of the earliest signs of Glaucoma. It also talks about the types of Glaucoma and the risk factors associated with diabetes, being nearsighted, and having a family history of the disease. 

San Diego Center for the Blind can help you or a loved one with vision loss or blindness. Please reach out to us to learn more.

6 Early Signs of Glaucoma: What You Need to Know
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Changes to make around the home for people with low vision
Anyone living with low vision knows that small changes around your home and living space can make bit improvements in your quality of life. Although, ideally, you will be able to work with an occupational therapist to help you figure out what changes to make, if you are trying to figure it out on your own for the time being, these 13 suggestions might help. 

Advice ranges from changing your light bulbs (the type and intensity may be different for different people with differing low vision), securing your throw rugs or getting rid of them completely, and organize your space by task to reduce complications. 

If your quality of life is affected by vision loss, then please reach out to SDCB. Our programs and services can help you in several ways.

13 Little Updates to Make Your Home Low-Vision Friendly
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Home Eye Safety Month and Preventing Vision Loss
vision lossOctober is Eye Injury Prevention Month. Did you know that half of all eye injuries happen at home? Take precautions to prevent eye injuries, don't risk a lifetime of vision loss—protect your eyes. Wearing eye protection when working outside and inside can help prevent eye injuries. Read and follow the directions when working with chemicals like bleach. Adequately lighted stairways prevent falls. Safely store chemicals away from children.

Please reach out to SDCB if your quality of life is affected by vision loss. We offer several services that can help.


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Regular Eye Exams Help Prevent Vision Loss
vision lossSeptember is Healthy Aging Month! The American Academy of Ophthalmology emphasizes the importance of eye exams for maintaining healthy eyes and preventing vision loss. Regular eye exams result in early detection of common age-related eye diseases, such as age-related macular degeneration, cataract, diabetic retinopathy, and glaucoma. Early detection leads to treatment, and treatment can prevent vision loss.

If your quality of life is affected by vision loss, then please reach out to SDCB. Our programs and services can help you in several ways.

"Ophthalmologists encourage making eyes part of a healthy aging strategy"

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Stem Cells for Treating Vision Loss
vision lossThe cornea is the transparent front section of the eye covering the iris and pupil. Scientists in Japan are treating damaged corneas using stem cells. The surgeon reports that the procedure has led to improved vision. Stem cells in the cornea may be the future with regard to refreshing and repairing corneas and vision loss.

There is only one cornea available for transplant per 70 needed. Stem cells may be the answer to closing the gap.

SDCB vision rehabilitation programs can help improve your quality of life. Please contact us to learn more.

"World first: Doctors use 'reprogrammed' stem cells to repair cornea"

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Hazard Maps for Color Blindness
blindnessJapan is a country located in the "ring of fire." Which means it is highly susceptible to tectonic activity like earthquakes and volcanic eruptions. A government task force is planning to redesign its hazard maps to better assist people living with color blindness.

Current earthquake hazard maps utilize colors to indicate the extent to which areas across the nation are susceptible to earthquakes. The new maps would discontinue the use of green; people living with color blindness have difficulty distinguishing between red and green.

"The biggest purpose of using different colors to indicate disaster-related risks, I think, is to allow for the public's fastest, easiest grasp of danger on the way. But if shown in problematic colors, such a method of communication could backfire," said Masahiro Nakade of the Headquarters for Earthquake Research Promotion.

San Diego Center for the Blind can help you or a loved one with vision loss or blindness. Please reach out to us to learn more.

"Hazard maps to get redesign for color blind"

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Timing Matters for Treating Blindness
blindnessA gene therapy approved by the FDA for treating Leber congenital amaurosis (LCA), a rare, inherited form of blindness, has given many people hope. However, new research from the University of Pennsylvania has found that it may only be effective when used at the proper time. The research team worked with canine models of advanced stage LCA; their findings appear in the journal Molecular Therapy.

"Earlier work by our group and others had suggested that if you treated the disease at a time when the retina was degenerating, that degeneration continued, in people and in dogs," explained Gustavo D. Aguirre of Penn's School of Veterinary Medicine. "This was in spite of short-term gains in vision. We wanted to follow up to get details about the extent of retinal degeneration that would still be compatible with a lasting effect."

SDCB offers several programs that can assist people living with vision loss or blindness. Please contact us today to learn more.

"Effectiveness of Gene Therapy for Blindness Depends On Timing"

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Measles Can Cause Blindness
blindnessVaccinating children is a topic of serious discussion of late. Many parents are choosing not to have their children vaccinated. Vaccine rates are plummeting! This trend is putting many children at risk of death and disability from measles. The World Health Organization (WHO) reports that there were 110,000 measles deaths globally, mostly among children under age 5, in 2017. Measles can also cause blindness and encephalitis.

"It certainly is incredibly frustrating and upsetting to the public health community that we may lose measles elimination status, because we do have a safe and effective vaccine," said Dr. Nancy Messonnier, director of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases.

Please contact SDCB if you are struggling with vision loss or blindness. We offer many programs that can help improve life quality.

"The US eliminated measles in 2000. The current outbreak could change that"

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Wearing Sunglasses Can Help Prevent Blindness
blindnessThe sun emits powerful ultraviolet rays that can damage your skin; it's the cause of sunburns and skin cancer. However, the planet's source of light can also do irreparable harm to one's eyes. UV rays can damage eye proteins increasing the risk for cataracts, according to a 2014 study funded by the U.S. National Eye Institute.

Studies show that UV damage can enhance one's risk for macular degeneration— a leading cause of age-related blindness. UV exposure can also cause photokeratitis which may lead to temporary blindness. Wearing sunglasses can reduce your risk of experiencing eye disease.

We invite you to contact the San Diego Center for the Blind if you are struggling with vision loss. We offer many programs that can help.

"How Wearing Sunglasses Actually Impacts Your Eyes, According to Science"

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