Legal blindness means total blindness.

Legal blindness is a term used by the IRS and other agencies to determine whether a person is eligible for disability benefits or other services. You are considered legally blind if the central vision in your better eye, with the best correction possible, is no better than 20/200 (20/20 being normal). At Braille Institute we offer classes and programs that help people adjust to being legally blind.

All blind people can read braille.

Only about 10 percent of people who are blind or visually impaired can read and write braille. This is why Braille Institute is dedicated to helping people who lost their vision or is experiencing vision loss to learn how to read and write braille. Coupled with other services such as art, singing, yoga and even adaptive technology classes, our students learn to live more fulfilling lives with sight loss.

There is no treatment for age-related macular degeneration (AMD).

There are two types of AMD—“wet” and “dry.” The wet form can often be successfully treated with laser surgery to prevent further vision loss if caught early. Unfortunately, there is no treatment for the dry form. However, most people with AMD will not become totally blind and will retain some peripheral vision. While dealing with AMD can be difficult, Braille Institute provides a comprehensive experience catered to each individual’s needs. Whether it is exploring art classes or visiting our mobile centers throughout Southern California, Braille Institute has something for everyone.
People who lose sight are compensated by a sixth sense that helps them identify their surroundings.

People who are blind do not develop any new special sense, but learn to use their remaining senses more acutely.

Thus, the senses themselves may seem to be enhanced. Braille Institute offers many classes on mobility. Our students will learn from highly specialized Mobility and Orientation instructors about proper white cane techniques as well as gain valuable knowledge on how to navigate busy streets. For more information about our classes, visit or call your local Braille Institute programs in your area.

People who are blind can perform only limited types of work.

With the technology available today, or with some minor accommodations, a wide range of occupations is easily accessible to people who are visually impaired. Braille Institute offers free career counseling services to our students. Learning how to live a fulfilling life with sight loss includes learning to use new adaptive skills and technology to be a successful employee at any workplace. Examples of the occupations in which blind people have been successfully employed are:

  • Account clerk
  • Travel agent
  • Attorney
  • Customer service representative
  • Electrical engineer
  • Stock broker
  • Teacher
  • Medical transcriptionist

When talking with a blind person, you should avoid words such as “see,” “look” or “blind.”

A person who is blind will feel more comfortable if you use the words you normally use with sighted people. Visit your local Braille Institute and you will find many smiling and cheery faces on volunteers, staff and students. We pride ourselves in enjoying life and learning from experiences, despite its everyday obstacles.