Among all of our senses, our eyesight is perhaps the one for which we are most thankful. A considerable amount of our life’s experiences are a result of the things we observe in the world around us. Our sight also safeguards us from a wide range of threats. Reduced or low vision can make it more difficult to avoid the dangers and hurdles we encounter, both within and outside of the home.
If you are providing care for a loved one who is losing vision, creative use of colors and contrasts can raise the person’s level of safety and independence. It’s not as difficult as you might think! For instance, keep these guidelines in mind:
- Solid, bright colors such as red, orange, and yellow are best for reflecting light, and therefore are easiest to see.
- Light-colored objects positioned against darker backgrounds offer heightened contrast. For example, putting a white piece of paper on a brown desk stands out much more than on a beige surface.
- Similarly, darker-colored items are easier to see when placed on lighter backgrounds. A dark green chair can be best seen against a light-colored wall.
- When organizing furniture and other objects in the home, keep in mind that particular colors are so similar that distinguishing between them can be a challenge for someone with low vision. The most common color combinations that cause difficulties are:
- Navy blue, brown, and black
- Purple, blue, and green
- Yellow, pink, and light green
- Utilizing light-reflecting tape or brightly colored paint on the top edge of the first and last steps on a staircase can help them stand out.
- Runners for hallways in bright, solid colors can help more clearly clarify walking areas.
Of course, before carrying out any modifications in a senior loved one’s home who is losing vision, it’s important to keep that person’s wishes and feelings in mind. A senior dealing with vision loss is probably facing a variety of fears, such as a diminished sense of control over his/her life decisions, loss of freedom and privacy, and the fear that other people may see him or her differently. The individual may also be feeling overwhelmed or apprehensive about what the future has in store, and hesitant to share his or her feelings. Staying sensitive to these feelings as opposed to just brushing them aside can make a substantial impact.
If someone you love is battling low vision challenges, call on the Live Well at Home care team for support and resources at 800-478-1209 to learn more about our Carmichael senior care and all of the communities we serve. Click here to view the full service area.