Psychological Impact of Visual Impairment

Everyone responds differently. The aging person may have the problem compounded by physical as well as other losses he/she may be experiencing. He/she may feel useless, anxious, fearful, helpless, and angry as a reaction to the visual loss. The person experiencing a sudden vision loss may be in a state of shock and unable to respond or function in his/her usual manner. He/she may be depressed. Depression is a normal and necessary part of adjustment to a visual loss. Support and encouragement are important for this person.

Different reactions to blindness may be:

Visually impaired persons usually go through a period of depression and reaction to the loss. Each individual responds in his/her own ways. A goal is to enable the individual to adjust to the loss as a reality and to be able to recognize his/her remaining interests and capabilities. Adjustment to blindness can be achieved as fears diminish through retraining and redeveloping the person’s remaining potentials.

Reference: “Caring for the Visually Impaired Older Person,” Minneapolis Society for the Blind, Inc., 1976.