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Understanding Color Blindness

Color vision problems are a commonly innate disability that prohibits the ability to distinguish between shades of color. Color blindness is caused by damage to the cones in the eye's macular area, typically damaging a viewer's power to distinguish between shades of red or green, but may impact the perception of additional shades too.

Color perception depends on the cones located in the eye's macula. Humans are typically born with three types of pigmented cones, each perceiving various wavelengths of color tone. This is comparable to wavelengths of sound. When it comes to colors, the length of the wave is directly associated with the resulting color. Long waves are seen as red tones, medium-length waves are seen as green tones and short waves produce blues. The pigmented cone that is missing has an impact on the spectrum and severity of the color blindness.

Green-red color blindness is more frequent among males than among females because the genetic encoding is linked to gender and is recessively inherited.

Color vision problems are not a debilitating condition, but it can hinder educational development and work performance. Not having the ability to distinguish colors as peers do could quickly harm a student's self-esteem. Depending on the field of work, color blindness could become a disadvantage when running against normal-sighted colleagues in a similar industry.

Optometrists use numerous evaluation methods for color blindness. The most common is the Ishihara color test, named after its inventor. For this test a plate is shown with a circle of dots in various colors and sizes. Within the circle one with proper color vision can see a numerical figure in a particular tint. The patient's ability to make out the number inside the dots of clashing colors indicates the level of red-green color vision.

Even though genetic color vision deficiencies can't be treated, there are a few options that can assist to make up for it. Some people find that wearing tinted contacts or glasses which minimize glare can help people to see the distinction between colors. Increasingly, computer applications are on the market for standard personal computers and for smaller machines that can assist people to distinguish color better depending upon their particular condition. There are also exciting experiments underway in gene therapy to enhance color vision.

The extent to which color blindness limits an individual depends on the variant and severity of the condition. Some patients can adapt to their deficiency by familiarizing themselves with alternate clues for colored objects or signs. For example, they can learn the order of traffic signals or compare items with paradigms like the blue sky or green trees.

If you notice signs that you or a child might have a color vision deficiency it's advised to see an eye doctor. The sooner you are aware of a problem, the sooner you can help. Feel free to call our Costa Mesa, CA eye care practice for information about scheduling an exam.


COVID-19 has been and continues to be an ongoing trial for all of us. During this unforeseen time, we ask kindly for your understanding and compliance to the CDC guidelines. In order to decrease the chances of contraction, we are allowing only one parent to accompany their child during the examination. We appreciate your patience and understanding.

We also want to inform you of the new additional symptoms of COVID-19 that have been added to the previous symptoms as potential indicators of having COVID-19:

New symptoms:             Congestion/runny nose

Previous symptoms:       Headache
                                            Dry cough
                                            Shortness of breath
                                            Sore throat
                                            Muscle/body aches
                                            New loss of taste or smell

Please be aware that a person does not have to have all of these symptoms but anyone or multiple symptoms can be an indicator of having COVID-19. If you or any family members are experiencing any of the above symptoms, we kindly ask that you reschedule your appointment and contact yourprimary care provider. It is best to reschedule your appointment with us after being symptom-free for14 days.

We at South Coast Optometry truly appreciate each and every one of you as a person and value your trust in us to take care of your most precious eyes. As always, we will continue to closely monitor the COVID-19 situation and communicate any and all changes through our website, Again, we truly appreciate your understanding and support during this unprecedented time and look forward to seeing everyone soon!


Dr. Daniel E. Quon, O.D., and The Entire South Coast Optometry Team!!!


Until further notice, we are only seeing essential care patients. Our hours are:
Monday: 10:00 AM to 7:00PM
Tuesday: Closed
Wednesday: 10:00 AM to 7:00 PM
Thursday: 9:00 AM to 6:00 PM
Friday: 10:00AM to 6:00 PM
Saturday: 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM

We now offer TeleHealth consultations, Call (714) 540-2020 to schedule a time
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