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Color Blindness: An In-depth Look


Color blindness is a commonly genetic condition which impairs someone's ability to distinguish among shades of color. Color blindness is a result of a dysfunction of the cones in the retina, typically preventing a viewer's ability to distinguish between shades of red or green, but may adversely affect the perception of additional hues too. 
The perception of color is dependent upon the cones located in the eye.} Humans are commonly born with three kinds of cones, all perceiving differing wavelengths of color. This is comparable to the wavelengths of sound. With pigment, the size of the wave is directly connected to the perceived color tone. Short waves project blue tones, medium-length waves produce greens and long waves produce reds. Which pigmented cone is missing determines the nature and seriousness of the color deficiency. 
Green-red color vision deficiencies are more frequent among males than among females because the genes are gender linked.
Color blindness is not a debilitating disability, but can damage learning and development and work performance. Not having the ability to distinguish colors as peers do could immediately hurt a student's self-esteem. For working people, color blindness could become a disadvantage when competing against normal-sighted colleagues in a similar field.
Optometrists use several evaluation methods for color blindness. The most widely used is the Ishihara color test, called after its inventor. For this test a patient views a plate with a circle of dots in different colors and sizes. Within the circle appears a numerical figure in a particular tint. The patient's capability to see the number inside the dots of clashing hues examines the level of red-green color vision.
While genetic color blindness can't be treated, there are a few steps that can assist to make up for it. Some evidence shows that using colored lenses or glasses which block glare can help to see the distinction between colors. Increasingly, new computer programs are becoming available for regular PCs and for mobile machines that can assist people to enhance color distinction depending upon their particular condition. There are also exciting experiments underway in gene therapy to improve color vision.
How much color vision problems limit an individual is dependant upon the type and severity of the deficiency. Some individuals can accommodate to their condition by familiarizing themselves with alternate cues for determining a color scheme. For instance, learning the order of traffic signals or comparing objects with reference objects like the blue sky or green plants.
If you suspect that you or your loved one could be color blind it's advised to schedule an appointment with an eye doctor. The sooner a diagnosis is made, the easier it will be to adapt to. Contact our , eye doctors to schedule an exam.