EnChroma Glasses for the Colour Blind
What Are EnChroma Glasses?
EnChroma glasses are lenses that have been specifically engineered for people suffering from colour blindness. The colour blind glasses allow them to see a wider spectrum of bright colour. The innovation has been proven to help 80% of people with colour-blindness. They are essentially made up of a lens technology that features a patented light filter. This is applied incredibly carefully, and primarily targets red-green colour-blindness, which is the most common kind. It is worth noting that EnChroma glasses are not quite a cure for colour-blindness. An eye exam from a professional optician is required to establish whether it is possible to have the condition treated.
To help understand the use of Enchroma glasses, let's take a look at what colour-blindness is.
Normal Colour Vision:
White light is actually made up of the different colours of the rainbow. When it enters the eye, three different parts of the visible spectrum are recognised: blue, green and red. The colours are picked up by colour-sensitive photoreceptors found within photopigments.
The most common form of colour-blindness occurs when the green and red colour receptors overlap. This makes the two colours hard to distinguish for the viewer. In the worst cases, the various shades of a hue can be reduced by up to 90%.
Who Are EnChroma Glasses For?
Red-green colour-blindness is the most frequently found form of the condition. It affects just under 5% of the global population, which represents about 350 million people. However, men are more likely to suffer from colour-blindness than women. It is estimated that around one in twelve men experience difficulties distinguishing red from green, compared to just one in 200 women. This is caused by the way our genetics work, with the genes for colour-blindness appearing on the X-chromosome. Consequently, the condition is passed on by women, but rarely affects them.
As for colour-blindness between blue and yellow, this is thought to affect a similar number of people around the world as red-green colour-blindness. However, rather than occurring at birth, this form of the condition tends to worsen over time. As a result, the number of cases of blue-yellow blindness is increasing thanks to our ageing population.
Other types of colour-blindness do exist, but they are so rare that they only impact 1 in 2000 people. Nevertheless, this can vary between different subpopulations.
To find out if you are colour blind, take this quick and easy online test here. As red-green colour-blindness is experienced on the largest scale, this is what is targeted by EnChroma glasses.
How do EnChroma Glasses Work?
The EnChroma lens was initially developed by a glass scientist in the early 2000s. The technology was supposedly discovered by accident, and has since undergone intense clinical research for over a decade. It works by filtering out light wavelengths at the exact spot where the colour receptors overlap each other. The two photoreceptors are changed to increase differentiation between colours along the line of confusion for that person’s eyes.
It is worth taking into account that as part of the process, less light is permitted to enter the eye. As a consequence, it is not advisable to wear such lenses at night. Users are also warned not to wear them while driving, for safety reasons.
Do EnChroma Glasses Work?
EnChroma glasses aim to support four out of five cases of red-green colour-blindness. It cannot guarantee a 100% success rate because there are different levels of severity for colour-blindness, ranging from mild to severe. In strong cases of colour-blindness, the patient will achieve limited results from EnChroma glasses owing to their complete lack of colour vision. However, the vast majority of people with red-green colour-blindness will be able to see much brighter vibrant colours while wearing the glasses. This can save people embarrassment and endless questions like “what colour do you think that tree is?”. The glasses can also enable those in the creative industries to express themselves without the fear of getting a colour wrong. Although EnChroma glasses will not facilitate those with red-green colour-blindness to enter the airforce. Nevertheless, the glasses may come in handy when ensuring those with the colour blind condition swallow the correctly coloured medical pill.
EnChroma glasses are also solely designed to treat red-green colour-blindness. This means that those who struggle to distinguish blue and yellow will not be able to benefit.
EnChroma glasses don’t just solve colour-blindness, they offer other perks too. One example is that they ensure 100% protection from the sun’s UV rays. In addition, the lenses are oleophobic and hydrophobic. This means that the surface repels dust, water and sweat, which renders them very easy to clean. You can find this type of lens at SmartBuyGlasses too, as we offer different types of lens coatings, such as scratch resistance and blue light blocking.
How Much Do EnChroma Glasses Cost?
If you are serious about correcting your colour-blindness, you can expect the EnChroma glasses price to fall between 200 and 400. There are often special offers available, so it is worth checking back at certain times of year to get a good deal on EnChroma glasses cost. You can find sunglasses for outdoor use, or lighter tints for use at home or in the office. They make a good investment as you can choose the frame style that works best for you. To find the best fit for you, have a look at our face shape guide here. It is worth taking into consideration that the cost of colour blind glasses will not be covered by medical insurance, as the condition is not considered to affect an individual’s health.
Colour Blind Contact Lenses
A good alternative to EnChroma glasses are contact lenses. A well reputed brand is called ColorMax, which was developed by Dr Thomas Azman. The doctor’s Colour Correction System can be applied to both glasses and contact lenses. Another brand of contact lenses for colour-blindness includes Chroma-Gen, which was invented by the Brits. They offer both contacts and glasses, and claim to correct more than just red and green colour deficiencies, with 8 colour tints on offer. The tint is located over the pupil, and in most cases, cannot be seen by others. An extra benefit of ChromaGen is that the lenses can also support those with dyslexia, as the colour tints help clarify the words on the page.
Fun Facts About Colour-Blindness
If you want more information on solutions to colour-blindness, you might enjoy these quick and interesting facts!
- Humans are born completely colour blind, but by the age of 6 months, they should be able to see the full colour spectrum. The ability to distinguish colours then develops until the age of 20, after which colour vision tends to gradually diminish.
- Lots of people believe that dogs see in black and white, but this is actually a myth. The truth is that dogs see mostly in yellow and blue.
- People who suffer from red-green colour-blindness have most difficulty distinguishing between green and brown. As a result, they may not be able to tell if a banana is ripe, and have been known to believe that peanut butter is green, owing to its particular shade of brown.
- For some people with colour-blindness, the rainbow is seen as just two bands: one yellow and one blue.
- Beware of colour blind drivers on the roads, as the traffic lights can appear to look very similar in colour. The red and amber lights can blend together, and the green often appears a more white or blue hue.