Even if you regard aging as a graceful, wisdom generating process or as a long term bummer, you don’t want to stay in the dark about how to adjust your environment to meet your changing needs. Aging eyes become more susceptible to common eye problems and lower vision. There are lots of treatments available for this condition including lighting solutions that help enhance your vision. It can be as simple as changing the type of lighting you have, using darker colored light switches as a contrast on light colored walls, or installing occupancy sensor controls will give you some control over the way age related visual impairment affects your daily life.
Increasing the general light level in a space not only helps seniors see better, it also helps them stay awake during the day and will generally help improve daily sleep cycles. Also, improving the uniformity of the light distribution in a space to reduce shadows will help with vision along with using “daylight” whenever possible and introducing it into the space in more than one direction by incorporating skylights along with less heavy draping on window coverings and balance it with available electric lighting will help to immerse the space with light and minimize shadows.
If you are building or remodeling use lighter colored surfaces in your selection of ceiling, walls. Flooring and your furniture to maximize the amount of light in that space. Make sure your stairwells and outdoor stairways are highly illuminated to improve safety and avoid risky falls. It would be a good lighting practice to add number of strategically placed step-lights to help maintain good general lighting in these areas.
At night the use of in-wall or plug in night lights in bedrooms and bathrooms and kitchens will be very helpful for navigating these spaces. Whenever possible it would be advisable to install easy to use Lighting Controls that will allow us to adjust the amount of light needed for any given situation.
Just remember aging eyes need more light, especially for distinguishing fine details. People who are 65 or older need four times the amount of light than individuals who are 25 years old and younger.
Brandy Levy, “Legacy Luminaire,” is a lighting specialist as well as a crystal specialist and visual display maven.Brandy owned Legacy Lighting & Home from 2000 to 2010. She was presented with the “Lighting Showroom of the year” award in 2009. Brandy has now returned to the same location, which is now owned by Premier Lighting. Brandy is Premier’s Corporate Retail Supervisor and Lighting Buyer for Premier’s four stores. She has 30 years experience in the lighting industry, and has appeared many times in industry publications. Brandy can be contacted at Premier Lighting – 480-699-3534, ext. 1403.