Handheld Magnifying Glasses

A handheld magnifying glass can be a very powerful tool for people with low vision. It is portable, affordable and simple to use for a variety of tasks.

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Handheld Magnifying Glasses Videos

What are Handheld Magnifying Glasses for Low Vision?

Handheld magnifiers are simply as their name states - a magnifying glass, often with some type of handle. It can allow a person to focus on a small area, such as reading labels on products at the supermarket, and makes the target appear bigger. The handheld magnifying glass can be easily controlled as the person using it can direct it to the spot that he wants to see clearer. It is important to consult with your low vision optometrist to figure out what your daily activities are and if the handheld magnifier can suit your needs.

These magnifiers come in different shapes and sizes; some will be easy to carry around to use as needed, while others may be larger and best to use at home. There are magnifying glasses that can be worn as a pendant on a necklace for easy access. Some more advanced models will also have a built-in light to allow for increased effectiveness in darker conditions.

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Who Can Benefit from a Handheld Magnifying Glass?

The handheld magnifying glass can be beneficial to anyone who has difficulty seeing up close and whose hands are steady and available to hold the visual aid. It is helpful to many people, including those who have various different eye conditions, such as impaired central vision. Some examples include:

  • Macular degeneration
  • Macular hole
  • Macular dystrophy
  • Cone-rod dystrophy
  • Visual field defects
  • Diabetic retinopathy
  • Retinal detachment
Advantages of Handheld Magnifying Glasses

Advantages of Handheld Magnifying Glasses

Handheld magnifiers come with several advantages, including:

  • Portability
  • Relatively affordability
  • Easy learning curve as it generally requires very little instruction and many people are already familiar with handheld magnifying glasses
  • Models exist in a wide range of shapes, sizes and magnification strengths, allowing you to find one that works best for you
  • Possible feature of an included light which can function effectively even in the dark
Advantages of Handheld Magnifying Glasses

Advantages of Handheld Magnifying Glasses

While handheld magnifiers offer many advantages, they are not suitable for all scenarios and thus it is important to understand some limitations before deciding which low vision aid is right for you and your daily activities.

Some points to keep in mind about the handheld magnifying glass include:

  • There is a small visual field so it only allows for reading a little bit of text at a time and therefore it is not recommended to use for longer reading, such as reading a book
  • They require steady hands and good fine motor control to use effectively

If you have any hesitations or questions, please consult with your eye doctor as there are many visual aids available to choose from.

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How to Use a Handheld Magnifier

How to Use a Handheld Magnifier

Handheld magnifying glasses are perhaps the easiest low vision aid to use. You simply hold it over the target that you want to magnify, and adjust the distance of the magnifying glass between the object or text and your eyes to achieve the best focus. Your low vision optometrist will be able to make informed suggestions for you on which handheld magnifying glass to choose and how to use it, based on your personal needs and preferences.

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