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Color Blindness

Color Blindness Color Blindness Makes Seeing Tricky
Color blindness may be more than a simple malady that results in mismatched clothes on random occasion. Some people with color blindness really don't realize their clothes may not match. The good news is color blindness does not prevent full color sight. People who are color blind do not walk around looking at the world in shades of black and gray. Rather, people who are color blind often have difficulty differentiating between similar shades of colors.

While having color blindness may make selecting the perfect pair of matching pants and shirt tricky, it is not typically a serious or life threatening condition. Most people who are color blind have difficulty differentiating between reds and greens. This may cause some problems when driving, but most people are able to drive without hazard simply by paying attention to the manner in which traffic lights work and other people's reactions. After all, the red light is almost always at the top.

Causes of Color Blindness
What causes color blindness? Color blindness results when the cones in your eyes don't work properly. The cones in the eye are tiny cells located along the retina. These cones are normally sensitive to a wide spectrum of colors including red, blue and greens. Cones can usually distinguish between these colors and various shades of them.

For someone to see correctly they must have cones that see each of the different colors correctly. In some cases the cones aren't able to process color correctly, hence the brain doesn't interpret color messages as well as it would if the cones were fully functioning. For patients who are color blind, certain shades of green may appear tan or gray.

Who's At Risk?
Color blindness is typically passed from generation to generations. Most of the time men are more susceptible to the color blindness gene than women. Most children are screened at a young age for color blindness. This consists of a simple test that includes reviewing multiple colored dots of similar colors. Patients who are color blind may not be able to see a certain picture or may have difficulty seeing the number or other figure within the dots of color.

Color blindness usually surfaces in one of every 12 boys. Color blindness may be complete, affecting the full spectrum of colors, or partial, so that only certain colors appear incorrectly. Complete color blindness is an exceedingly rare condition and may accompany other serious vision problems.

Signs and Symptoms
Patients with color blindness often have difficulty distinguishing between varying shades of greens and reds. Less commonly some patients will have trouble distinguishing certain shades of blues or greens. Objects may also appear in varying shades of gray in some patients with more complete forms of color blindness.

At this time there is no cure for color blindness. Fortunately most patients with this condition have only minor problems and can learn to associate certain colors and objects to help them detect colors like everyone else. This is why most patients who are color blind can continue driving.

The primary disadvantage of being color blind is patients may not be able to enjoy the full spectrum of the rainbow so to speak, when it comes to detecting color. And, they may occasionally arrive at work or play in mismatched tops and bottoms. If that happens, just laugh it off. Life is a good 'ol hurrah anyway! Color blindness is one of the less debilitating of vision problems, and many patients are happy to simply see!

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