February 2013 is Low Vision Awareness Month

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Vision Impairment can range from low vision to legal blindness to complete blindness. Some conditions that cause vision impairment include cancer, cataracts, diabetic retinopathy, glaucoma, macular degeneration, multiple sclerosis, and stroke.

Persons who are losing their vision often feel depressed, confused, frustrated, and scared. Education about available resources, services, and support can make a huge difference in the lives of people living with low vision and blindness.

The Disability Information and Referral Center (DIRC) of the Texas Talking Book Program houses a wealth of free material available on the topic of low vision. The DIRC can provide low vision catalogs of adaptive aids; contacts for national, state, and local agencies and organizations; assistive technology resources; information on financial aid for equipment as well as eye exams and medication; and many other resources. The DIRC also features a lending library of print books and audio-visual materials on topics related to disabilities and health conditions.

Here are a few examples of materials available on topics related to low vision:

Coping with Vision Loss: Maximizing What You Can See and Do

Going Blind (DVD)

The Illustrated Guide to Assistive Technology and Devices: Tool and Gadgets for Living Independently

The Uncomplicated Guide to Diabetes Complications

Please call 800-252-9605 / 512-463-5458, or e-mail tbp.services@tsl.texas.gov for more information.

Here are links to two pamphlets on low vision:

From the National Eye Institute:
http://www.nei.nih.gov/lowvision/

From Lighthouse International:
http://lighthouse.org/downloads/publications/vision_loss.pdf