Visual Impairment / Blindness

Table of contents:

Visual Impairment / Blindness
Visual Impairment / Blindness

Video: Visual Impairment / Blindness

Video: Visual Impairment / Blindness
Video: Early Intervention: Helping babies with visual impairments 2023, September

Visual impairment / blindness

With a visual impairment, visual acuity and field of vision are severely restricted. Blindness is defined by a maximum restriction of the eyesight or the field of vision - up to the lack of perception of any light (amaurosis). Blindness can be congenital (e.g. due to malformations or prenatal infections) or occur in the course of life. Mobility is largely retained with a long stick and possibly a guide dog. The yellow armband with the three black dots draws people's attention to the situation.


  • Continue reading
  • more on the subject
  • Advice, downloads & tools
  • Degrees of severity
  • Causes of blindness
  • Schools for the visually impaired and the blind
  • Vision aids & readers
  • Meeting blind people
  • Services & information from the official

Degrees of severity

Visual impairments can be divided into different degrees of severity. The decisive factor is the remaining vision (residual vision) on the better seeing eye (with glasses or contact lenses) compared to a normally seeing eye:

  • Visual impairment: visual remainder of ≤ 30 percent;
  • Severe visual impairment: visual remainder of ≤ five percent;
  • Blindness: vision of ≤ two percent.

Causes of blindness

Visual impairments have a variety of reasons (e.g. eye diseases). The most common causes of blindness in Europe include:

  • Glaucoma,
  • age-related macular degeneration,
  • diabetic retinopathy,
  • Uveitis,
  • Injuries to the eye as well
  • Retinal detachment.

Schools for the visually impaired and the blind

Visually impaired schools for children enable participation in the education system and aim at an everyday life that is as independent as possible. As an alternative, visually impaired pupils are integrated into mainstream schools - accompanied by a counseling teacher. By learning Braille, those affected can "read" embossed surfaces (eg paper) by finger scanning.

Vision aids & readers

If glasses are no longer sufficient and there is still some residual vision, visual aids can make everyday life easier. These include:

  • Magnifying glasses
  • Magnifying glasses
  • Telescopic loupes and glasses

Screen readers allow reading on a monitor. Electronically magnifying visual aids, books in large print or Braille as well as reading devices offer assistance.

Meeting blind people

Make your presence felt politely if you want to get in touch. Let the blind person hook you by the arm if you would like to offer accompaniment - e.g. to cross a lane. Then go a few centimeters ahead and draw attention to obstacles (e.g. heels) - guide the person, he can steer himself. At the table you can give brief information about where table utensils can be found. A list of dishes according to a clock face pattern with a corresponding explanation can make the meal easier. In order to empathize better with the blind and to expand one's own wealth of experience, a visit to a “dinner in the dark” can broaden one's horizons. You are guided by blind people.

People with disabilities can work in many jobs, including those with higher qualifications, and take part in social life. The aim is to (re) integrate into everyday (professional) life and lead a life that is as independent and self-determined as possible.

Services & information from the official

The Ministry of Social Affairs offers comprehensive information on the subject of disability and social issues as well as working life and the National Action Plan on Disability. The Austrian Association for the Blind and Visually Impaired provides information on the subject on its website. You can find everything to do with the search for a doctor / hospital or search for health services or self-help groups under Services.

The official offers comprehensive information on the topic of subsidies, financial support and much more.

Additional Information:

  • Disability pass
  • The way to medical aids & aids

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