Optical devices for low vision and vision impaired children

Children with low vision can benefit from the low vision aids or low vision devices. The devices can be categorized into 2 types, Optical Devices and non-optical Devices. 

Optical Aids or Devices: The Magnifiers and Telescopes are the 2 most common low vision devices. The Magnifiers for instance are used to look or observe objects close at hand. Whereas Telescopes are for looking at objects far away. The right vision tool a child might need can only be decided or prescribed by clinical tests done by an ophthalmologist or optometrist. Every child’s needs may differ and they might need customized products according to their needs and abilities, to benefit the child to the maximum. A Prism or lens is used in the optical aids or devices to reduce, magnify or to change the shape or position of an image on the retina. These visual Optimizers can be placed on base or on a table or held in the hand or fixed to a pair of eyeglasses. A closed-circuit Television (CCTV), or video magnifier, is a high-tech low vision electronic device which electronically enlarges prints and projects it on a monitor. 

Optical Devices for Near-Vision.

If kids are prescribed with a magnifier, it’s very important that they are provided with the chance to use them not only at home or schools but also in the community to improve their sense of independence and make them feel it’s quite normal to utilize their optical assistants. 

Examples of Near vision optical aids or Magnifiers are:

Handheld Magnifiers, stand magnifiers, Bar Magnifiers, Mirror magnifiers used to put on makeup or other self-care tasks. These Magnifying Devices are mainly used to conduct tasks that can be done within an arm’s range. Like, reading, writing, drawing, any art work, crafting projects. 

Optical devices for far vision:

Distance-vision optical devices are for distant viewing, which is also known as telescopic devices. These devices are used to carry on tasks that are not at an arm reach. The devices include clip-on monocular, spectacle-mounted telescopes and contact lens. The tasks like reading what’s written on a white board, spotting street lamps, reading sign boards, viewing television, viewing communal activities all can be carried on by the child with the help of these distant vision optical devices.

The electronic magnification system lets the user to target the camera on an object and view the same on a screen. These devices at large help the viewer to conceive near information just as the way video magnifiers work. This system lets a school going child to watch what the teacher is writing on the chalkboard and copy it down in his work book.  

Bioptic telescopic systems: These (BTSs) are eyeglasses designed especially for persons who love to drive. The persons with low vision who meet the required qualifications can drive a vehicle using the BTS. 

Non optical Devices: Visors with brims, hats, dark-lined paper, sunglasses, also black felt-tipped pens are Non optical Devices. These devices improve contrast or control lighting. Basically, these devices are to help the users/children to use their own vision more efficiently. 

The Optical Devices introduced to any child might need a while to get accustomed to it; this can only be achieved by regular practice and encouragement to obtain maximum benefit from it.  


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