An eye with a flower in the middle showing the progression of color fading

Community Views: Colors May Fade

In our community, it is important to talk about how macular degeneration progression can affect us mentally and physically. Progression can look different for everyone. But one common symptom of macular degeneration progression is colors becoming duller. Leaves on trees may look less vibrant, paintings may look more gray, and pictures may look duller.1

How does macular degeneration progress?

The timeline of macular degeneration progression is different for everyone. Doctors generally think of age-related macular degeneration as having 3 stages: early, intermediate, and late. Progression can look like:1

  • Dry macular degeneration becoming wet macular degeneration
  • Central blind spot (scotoma) grows
  • Colors look duller
  • Straight lines look wavy
  • Night driving becomes difficult
  • Reading becomes difficult

This or That

Recently, MD progression has affected me mostly

As we did for a previous article, we asked the Facebook community some questions to learn more about how people who live with macular degeneration experience the condition. This time, we focused on progression. Here are the questions we asked and the responses we received.

"How would you best describe what it's like to "'see dull colors'"?

One of the first members to respond said, "When driving, other cars appear either light or dark. I see no color until the vehicles are very close."

Another community member shared, "It’s extremely aggravating! I can only see yellow highlighter peripherally."

Someone else said that it's "disappointing. But it's only my left, so I can still see vivid colors with my right."

"How do you cope with seeing less vibrant colors?"

In response to this question, one community member shared, "Yes, everything is rather grey and dull, I've noticed lately. I've just resigned myself to the fact it's happening, not much that can be done about it I think. I mentioned it at my last appointment, but was just glossed over like it's just something I have to deal with . . . and I will, as usual. πŸ‘"

Another responded, "We will cope without a lot of nuances and be grateful there is still some vision left 😍 Be strong, hang in there! Good luck!"

"If there was one piece of advice you could give someone who was feeling anxious about their MD progressing, what would it be?"

This was one of the most popular questions we posted. Here are a handful of the responses we received from community members.

"Live in the moment. Literally, do the things you always wanted to do. 'Cause joy is the best medicine and anxiety is the thief of that joy."

"Keep in touch with your doctor and the medical team regularly."

"It progresses differently for everyone. My left eye went fast. My right eye is changing more slowly."

"There are always new medical technologies being developed – don't lose hope! Keep up to date with the latest information, and cultivate a support network that you can lean on in times of need."

"Appreciate each day that you can still see, take one day at a time, and pray each day for strength and wisdom."

If you would like to participate in the thread, you can find it here.

Do you have a quote or mantra that helps you manage progression anxiety? Share with us in the comments below!

Which image best reflects how you see colors?

A flower eye showing the progression of color fading

Has your macular degeneration progressed recently? Have you experienced seeing duller colors?

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This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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