Being visually impaired: Technology has made it possible for me to study!

in #life5 years ago (edited)

Due to my eye-condition (called Stargardt’s Disease) I lost my central vision which now has left me with a vision of 5%. It started when I was 10 but I’ve never let my vision loss stop me from doing the things I want! Here you can read a bit more about me and here you can find some of my experiences, thought and tips of going to the supermarket while being visually impaired.   

I am really grateful for the possibilities technology created for me, among other things it has made it possible for me to go to the university to get my master’s degree in Healthpsychology and Technology. So I want to show you what enables me to do this. Because I am a proud of the tools I have haha and maybe you know others who can benefit from it as well! 

So, yep, this is me with my first reading tool.   It was during high school that I was diagnosed with Stargardt’s Disease and aside from getting a laptop with magnifying options and speech, for reading books I got a glass globe which you can see in the picture below. 

However, as the years went by it got harder for me to read through this globe, I had to be so up close that my nose touched the globe. This gave me headaches and neck pain. So it was time for something else. This is my electronic magnifier (which fits in my purse). It can zoom in and out and it can changes contrast. I got this after I finished my first education (social work). So when I started with Healthpsychology and Technology I had a new start with a new device.    

At the same time I got a bigger tool to read at home. I don’t know the word for it in English but you can see it in the picture below. It has a camera directed on the book and the monitor displays it. Here I can also zoom in and out and change contrast. When I touch the screen… it can even read it to me, wauw! 

This was so helpful since my own reading is very slow. By having a tool that reads it out loud for me, I can do a lot more in one day that I was used to.    

Then there is my telescope glasses, very charming, I k now haha. I can actually watch television while sitting comfortably on a couch. Without these glasses I need to sit in front of the television by 1 meter or so to enjoy what I am seeing. Now I can enjoy watching a movie with my boyfriend while actually sitting comfy next to him. 

I also use these glasses during lectures at school in order to see what is on the screen but unfortunately, this doesn't help mee read the text that is on the screen.   

So last but not least, the magnifying software I mentioned earlier. With this softare I can actually use a laptop. Without it I pretty much can’t do anything because the letters would be too small for me to read. This software also has speech on it so I can let it read to me :)


 So now you know how technology can let me get my masters's degree. If you are visually impaired yourself or you know others who are, I hope I could inspire you a bit. If you have any questions you like to ask me, don't be afraid to ask!

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This was a very interesting read @boosje123! Thank you for sharing it. None of the pictures are displaying for me, however. I'd really like to see them! :)

Thank you for saying that! I've noticed that the pictures did not work. I believe I've fixed by now :)

All better now! Thanks!

I don't know if you wrote this with Project Positivity in mind, but it fits the theme of overcoming perfectly. I'm glad I saw this!

Well, I think I did! I've red about it and maybe I was (un?)consciously inspired :)

This is fascinating. Thank you for telling us about how you manage to read. I can imagine it must be quite frustrating at times if you are visually impaired.

It can indeed be frustrating at times but that's okay, as long as you stay overall positive. Positivity is very important!

An ophthalmologist thanks for sharing your experience :) a moving story

Hey Boo.... as a fellow human with an eye condition (macular degeneration) that kicked in when I hit about 50 ( and typically doesn't affect those until 60-70s), I can sympathize.

You might take a look at a post I put up a while back that allows you to get very high quality text-to-audio. Much better than the robotic voices from ZoomText or even Google, Apple , etc.

Check it out. It's fun and useful for those folks with 20/20 vision too. :-)

https://steemit.com/text2speech/@the-ivor/instant-audio-books-using-your-mobile-gadetry

That's is very thoughtful of you, I wil definitely check it out!

This is awesome! Thanks for sharing! Resteemed!

Thanks @williambanks for resteeming this and alerting me to the post.

O wow,@boosje123, I can't believe I met someone else on here with the same eye condition as me. I also have Stargardt's. Have had it since 7. Welcome, and really nice to meet you here.

Oh wauw, what are the oddS! I would love to read about your experiences :)

I know right? What are the odds. Would love to read more from you too. :)

I have Stargardt's too. I was diagnosed when I was about 24. I was in college to become an English teacher. I almost quit, but stuck it out. That was 15 years ago. I have a BA in English/Adolescent Education and a MA in Writing. I've been teaching for 12 years! I just lost my driver's license a few months ago and that's been really hard. But like all the other challenges, I will get through it! Do you have the AI Reader app? It's great.

It is never fun to hear that others have it too but in some way it is nice to hear that i am not the only one haha. I don't know a lot of others who have it, not that I am looking for them but still. It's great to hear that you just went on with it! For some people it takes a while to realize that quitting the things you love, or quitting the things you think you can't do anymore is not in your best interest. But in fact, with a bad vision there are still so much possibilities!
I must say, it's amazign that you got diagnosed so late in life. To me it was told that most people develope Sargardt between the age of 7-12.

My older sister has it too and was diagnosed at 20. So I kind of knew I had it and just never went to the doctor until I started really struggling at school. There is a pretty good support group on Facebook that often post information about the disease and a lot of people talk about their experiences.

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