Skip to content

    Eye Health Center

    Font Size
    A
    A
    A

    Eye Health and Color Blindness

    How is color blindness related to vision?

    When we see different colors, we are perceiving differences in the light that is reaching our eyes. The way we see different colors is something like the way we hear different sounds as being "low" or "high." This is called pitch, and it corresponds to the frequency of the sound.

    Recommended Related to Eye Health

    Understanding Astigmatism -- Symptoms

    The most common symptom of astigmatism is blurred or double vision. If you are only slightly affected, you may not notice anything wrong. More significant astigmatism may cause noticeable distortions of your vision. It is particularly important to remember that children with vision problems may not realize their vision is blurred. After all, they may never have seen the world in focus. That’s why it’s a good idea for children to have regular vision checks. Here are some symptoms of astigmatism...

    Read the Understanding Astigmatism -- Symptoms article > >

    The keys on the left side of a piano keyboard make low-frequency sounds, for example, and the frequency of the sound gets higher as one plays keys further to the right. There is a similar order to the colors we see.

    The colors of every rainbow always appear in the same order: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, and violet. The different colors in each part of the rainbow correspond to a different wavelength of light. Reddish colors are long in wavelength and bluish colors are shorter. And just as there are many notes on the piano, there are many wavelengths of light corresponding to different colors.

    How Does the Eye Normally See Colors?

    Think of your eye as a camera. The front of the eye contains a lens that focuses images on the inside of the back of the eye. This area, called the retina, is covered with special nerve cells that react to light.

    These retinal nerve cells include the rods and cones. The rods and cones react to light because they contain pigments that change when light strikes them.

    The cones are responsible for color vision. There are several kinds of pigments present in three types of cone cells. Some cones react to short-wavelength light, others react to medium wavelengths, and others react to higher wavelengths.

    There is only one kind of pigment in the rods, and it reacts the same way to any wavelength of light. The rods do not have anything to do with color vision; however, they are very sensitive to light and allow us to see at night.

    When the cones have all the various pigments, the eye sees all possible colors. It is something like the way a painter can mix just a few colors together and make paint of every possible color.

    Today on WebMD

    Woman holding tissue to reddened eye
    Learn about causes, symptoms, and treatments.
    eye
    Simple annoyance or the sign of a problem?
     
    red eyes
    Symptoms, triggers, and treatments.
    blue eye with contact lens
    Tips for wearing and caring.
     
    Understanding Stye
    Article
    human eye
    Article
     
    eye
    Video
    eye exam timing
    Video
     
    vision test
    Tool
    is vision correction surgery for you
    Article
     
    high tech contacts
    Article
    eye drop
    Article