Learning new strategies

Besides or in addition to using assistive devices to optimize your vision, there are strategies you can learn that can help enormously. Since these strategies require you to retrain your eyes to work differently from the way they have been for your entire life, this training takes commitment and perseverance. And it requires an experienced trainer, someone to coach you in the rocess.

But the results can be life-changing.

Eccentric viewing

With conditions like macular degeneration, the blind or blurry spot that disrupts your vision is in the center of your visual field, the straight-ahead detail vision we rely on to identify objects. If one eye retains central vision, your visual system may be able to

With eccentric viewing you learn to is particularly useful when scotomas affect both eyes. When a person no longer looks directly at the object they want to see, they are eccentrically viewing (i.e., they are using a healthier part of the retina). If they look directly at something, they cannot see it as well as if they look to the side.

With a central blind spot, looking slightly above, below or to one side of the object it can be seen better.  The view is not perfect, but better than if they were looking straight ahead. For example, someone’s facial features may be better seen by looking over their shoulder or at their forehead.