iPad Adventures for Our Sandwich Generation Family! Macular Degeneration!

by Kaye Swain

magnivision reading glasses 275One of our sweet senior friends has macular degeneration. It's a difficult situation that she is handling with her usual calm grace and that's a blessing to her and to all of us. And my senior mom is always looking for ways to help and encourage her from a distance whether by sending her musical greeting cards that she can hear, finding articles to mail her that her kids can read to her, and faithfully reminding me to make the letters we send her via email in large print so she can read them with the little bit of eyesight she has left.

Last week, when we were talking about the lovely fall photos we took, my mom asked if there was some way she could share them easily with our friend. That got me thinking about telling her about mom's iPad. She learned to use a computer by herself, through a seniors' class, over a decade ago. I should think she could probably handle the iPad fairly easily, with the help of her kids who live nearby. I went on a hunt for information about this specific topic and discovered:

  • The Macular Degeneration Association had some encouraging links for us including Smartphones and Other Gadgets Help Low Vision and Evelyn O'Brien of Wilbraham can now SEE her family. Talk about sweet words of encouragement – "When Evelyn looks at a person she can't see their face, but by using the iPad she can zoom in and see details she hasn't seen in over 30 years!"
  • WebRN-MacularDegeneration states, "Apple iPad can be a great low vision technology for those with macular degeneration or low vision."
  • iPad Forums has some older conversations about macular degeneration (two years – in computer time, that's like a lifetime :) ). If you have the time to research there, I think it could prove to be a very useful resource.
  • The Apple forum has an intriguing conversation about adding monitors to the iPad for even better visibility!
  • Macula.org also has some articles on the iPad and Macular Degeneration.
  • Eye-Related Downloads and Apps for You from All About Vision
  • And here's a podcast all about Macular Degeneration!

Overall, I was very encouraged by what I found and I'll be sharing this information along with the recommendation that our senior friend give serious thought to giving the iPad a try. Have you discovered any useful articles or information about the iPad and macular degeneration or other vision loss? We'd love to hear it. 

Kaye

P.S. Thank you so much for your comments. I enjoy them very much and read each one. I also love the grand ideas so many of you share that help and encourage other readers. Thank you.

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