The Sussex County Library System (SCLS) recently announced the availability of EnChroma color corrective glasses for borrowers who suspect they may be color blind.
Color vision deficiency affects 8% of men and 0.5% of women, many of whom don’t realize anything is wrong. While people with normal color vision see over a million shades of color, color blind people see about 10% of tints and shades. As a result, colors can appear dull and hard to discern, making it very difficult to understand colored information in graphs, tables, presentations, maps, etc.
The SCLS has acquired four pairs of EnChroma color corrective eyewear – one pair of sunglasses and one pair of indoor goggles for adults and children. The glasses can be borrowed for up to two weeks at a time, either as a test for the wearer to determine if this type of technology is something that can improve their life, or for specific events (an important test, a visit to the museum) where better color vision can have a real impact. (EnChroma glasses normally sell for between $189 and over $400.)
Since the library only has four pairs, they are housed in the main branch but can be requested at any SCLS branch and delivered as a book request.
“New Jersey is one of many states that does not require color blindness testing at school,” said Louisa Bann, librarian of adult services. “As a result, 20% of people with color blindness don’t even learn they have a disability until well into adulthood. Meanwhile, the inability to interpret color charts and maps causes children to be identified as slow learners, which affects their confidence in all areas of life. Making these glasses available to our borrowers allows them to determine if color correction can make a difference. »
EnChroma glasses are not a “cure” for color blindness and work about 80% of the time for people with red-green color vision deficiency. Some users see an immediate difference while others may take up to 10 minutes for the brain to adjust. A free color vision test on EnChroma’s website (enchroma.com/pages/test) can help potential users determine if red-green color-correcting glasses can help them. A trip to your local SCLS library to check out the glasses and try them on can help even more.
A free Sussex County Library Card is available to anyone living, working or attending school in Sussex County (excluding Sparta). Apply in person at any SCLS location or online at sussexcountylibrary.org/get-library-card.