Being diagnosed with an eye disease can be distressing for the individual, their family and friends.
The following tips should be considered in the first instance:
- Don’t make any quick decisions regarding current employment, activities, future plans or lifestyle
- Seek advice from all available sources including low vision service providers
- Take time to calmly sort out the pathway that will lead to the best outcomes
- Stay engaged with social and recreational networks, especially if you have been recently diagnosed. This is when networks may be at greater risk of breaking down.
- If you experience any feelings of withdrawal, anxiety or depression, seek immediate support and help from a local doctor.
"One of the most difficult things about being diagnosed was the uncertainty. How much vision would I lose and how long would it take? I made some decisions about life and work that were probably more reactive than positive. Since then I think I’ve learnt that I’m in control. I’m vision-impaired, not life-impaired.”
The more a person knows about their condition, its effects and options for dealing with the challenges presented by low vision, the more in control they will feel.
Because different eye diseases or conditions result in vision loss to varying degrees, it is important to complete a low vision assessment before pursuing available support services, low vision aids and technology.
Begin by speaking to an eye health professional about individual concerns and needs.