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This type of color blind glasses exists and is called monochromatism, but it is by far the rarest form of color blind glasses. It can manifest itself in different ways, just like the more common types of color blind glasses.
How our genes affect the colors we see.
The main cause of color blind glasses is a recessive gene located on the X chromosome. For this reason, men are much more likely to suffer from color blind glasses than women. As long as a woman has a copy of the gene for normal color vision, she will have normal color vision even as a carrier of the gene for color blind glasses, but her children may turn out to be color blind or carriers of the gene.
Males, on the other hand, either possess the gene on the same X chromosome and are colorblind, or they do not possess it and have normal color vision. The daughters of a colorblind male will always carry at least the gene, unless they received the colorblindness gene from their mother, in which case they will also be colorblind.
How does color vision work?
Our vision works with the help of specialized cells in the retina called rods and cones, with the cones being responsible for seeing details and colors clearly. In people with normal color vision, the cones absorb light at three different wavelengths – short-wave (blue), medium-wave (green), and long-wave (red) – and they work together to allow us to see all the intermediate colors. This is similar to the way old television sets worked, where the pixels were divided into red, green and blue stripes.
Color blind glasses occurs in different forms.
Color vision can be affected in different ways. The most common is red-green color blind glasses, which can be caused by inoperability of the red cones (protanomaly) or the green cones (deuteranomaly). In both cases, the result is a landscape of dull, brownish-yellow colors. 8% of men and 0.5% of women suffer from red-green color blind glasses.
A rarer form of color blind glasses is blue-yellow color blind glasses (tritanopia), which occurs when the blue cones do not function. As a result, the colors teal, pink and brown are present in the color palette. Only 5% of color blind people suffer from blue-yellow color blind glasses.
Monochromatism, as mentioned earlier, is even rarer. This may be because none of the cones are functioning, because only one type of cone is functioning, or because the visual cortex is processing the images. In addition to black and white vision, monochromatism is often accompanied by symptoms such as severe light sensitivity, involuntary eye movements, and poor central vision.
Some cases of color blind glasses can be treated.
Although the outcome is the same, color blind glasses does not always manifest itself in the same way. A dichromatic form means that one of the three cone types is completely absent, which cannot be treated. However, a similar trichromatic shape means that you have all your cones, but some of them respond to a wider range of wavelengths than they should. If the overlap is not too great, this type is actually treatable.
If you’ve ever seen videos of colorblind people trying special glasses and getting very emotional and seeing colors for the first time that they never could have seen before, then you’ve seen a treatment similar to trichromatism. These glasses work by blocking the wavelengths between what two different types of cones should see, increasing the contrast and allowing them to see these new colors.