Information About Eyes
Having albinism means that your eyes lack pigment which changes the structure of your eyes. They ‘wobble’ from side to side which makes it difficult to see detail.
All people with albinism have reduced eyesight, this varies from person to person, just as it does in people without albinism. You will find it more difficult to see things at a distance. You may find it difficult to judge movement and speed, for example when a ball is thrown or a car is travelling towards you.
Your eyesight will change as you get older, but you will not lose your sight.
Tips for Managing Reduced/Poor Eyesight
• Use colour, shape or patterns to help identify and find objects.
• Ask people to speak so you can recognise their voice and can follow lessons in class.
• Do reading and learning earlier in the day when you are fresh rather than later when your eyes are tired. It is ok to rest your eye if they are tired.
• Some people with albinism find that their eyes ‘wobble’ less when they tilt their head.
• Prescription glasses can help you read.
• Magnifiers that you hold in your hand will make letters and numbers larger.
Remember the most important thing is how you use the vision you have!
How Can Friends & Teachers Help?
• Walk with you so that you are safe crossing the road and help you learn how to get around at school and the community.
• Call you by your name when they see you, so that you recognise their voice, even if you do not see them clearly.
• Help you copy notes from the board in school or share their notes with you.
• Allow you to sit at the front of the class, in the middle so you can see the board
• Let you wear your hat indoors, to help protect your eyes from the bright light.
• Give you your own book to read, rather than sharing, so you can hold it close to your eyes.
• Write in big, clear letters on the board and speak aloud while writing.
• Provide tests and exams in large print.
• Explain to others what albinism is and why you are treated differently e.g. always sit at the front because you do not see as well as others.