About 8% of every men and 0.5% of every women room colorblind. The most common type is red-green shade blindness i beg your pardon affects much an ext men 보다 women, as it is encoded on the x-chromosome (sex-linked) and usually inherited native a mother to she son.

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But color blindness is not ‘color blindness’! There room still many human being who think colorblind human being can’t yes, really see any type of colors. However the term is misleading. Much more than 99% of all colorblind people can see colors. A better wording would be color vision deficiency, which defines this intuitive disorder much much more precisely.

So what in reality is shade vision deficiency additionally known as color blindness?

Simply put, if you room suffering from a shade vision deficiency you space perceiving a narrower shade spectrum compared to somebody v normal shade vision.

This short an interpretation raises a few more questions which must be answer to recognize the ax color-blind much more completely:

Why to be I suffering from color blindness at all?What way narrower shade spectrum contrasted to normal shade vision?Are there different types of color vision deficiency?How perform I understand if I’m colorblind?Is there some opportunity to cure shade vision deficiency?Can I simply live with it or perform I have to be fear of it?

In this post I will amongst other points answer the an initial two of those questions. The others will be looked in ~ in the follow up articles of this collection about Color blind Essentials. But first of all ns would choose to take you earlier to the 18th century.

History of color vision deficiency

The very first scientific record about shade blindness was created by man Dalton in 1793 licensed has been granted “Extraordinary truth relating to the vision the colours“. Dalton himself was red-green colorblind and as a scientist the took attention in this topic. He claimed, the a colored liquid within the eyeball is the source for a different color perception. This was showed wrong only after his death, when his eyes were examined and also no such fluid was found.

After that thomas Young and also Hermann von Helmholtz were the first who defined the trichromatic color vision. And once a theory for human color vision to be ready, the basics of shade vision deficiency weren’t much away.

The reason of color blindness

Color perception in the human eye is construct up by three different varieties of cones. Each form is sensitive to a specific wavelength of light (red, green, and also blue) and every perceived color is therefore a mixture that stimuli that those 3 cone types.

Now, if you among those peaks of sensitivity is shifted towards one more one or if one is absent at all, friend perceive a narrower color spectrum—in other words you space colorblind. together a peak deserve to be change everything between a tiny bit and the entirety way, any form of severity is possible. The closer the peaks are the an ext severe is your color vision deficiency: slightly, moderately, strongly, or for sure colorblind.


“What do you average by «narrower shade spectrum»?”

Let’s say somebody v normal color vision have the right to identify and distinguish 150 hues. If you are colorblind this number starts to drop together you have actually fewer possibilities come create shade mixtures indigenous your shade receptors. In situation of absolute shade blindness—missing one kind of cone in ~ all—you might be able to distinguish only as many as 20 various hues!


The type of influenced cones likewise has a large impact ~ above your color vision deficiency. As there are three different types of shade receptors, over there are also three various main forms: red (protan), environment-friendly (deutan), and blue (tritan) disorders. Together red and also green deficiencies an outcome in rather comparable color vision problems, lock are placed together and known under the ax red-green shade blindness. You will certainly find much more information top top the different species of shade blindness in the complying with two posts of this Color blind Essentials series.

Much less usual possibilities for color blindness are likewise glaucoma, aging, alcohol missuse, or a difficult injury on your head. Those components often reason some milder type of blue-yellow shade blindness (tritanomaly). Additionally other facts choose signal transmission can cause problems in shade perception, however this is not totally understood yet. In ~ allaboutvision.com girlfriend can discover a short list of other possible causes of shade vision deficiency.

Why am I enduring from color blindness?

You know now the reason of shade vision disorders, but we still have not evaluated why we can be colorblind at all.

We learned that in most situations color remote is a genetic disease i m sorry is inherited indigenous the parental to your children. This means, if one or both of her parents is enduring from some form of color vision deficiency, over there is a details chance that you or your children will have actually the very same vision handicap. The chance is strongly pertained to the kind of shade blindness.

Before I show you a sample inheritance pattern, we will have actually a closer look at our chromosomes. Unfortunately it is no as simple as it might be, due to the fact that there are various chromosomes involved in color vision. And also on optimal of that even on the same chromosome several various genetic password pieces room participating. The essence you should recognize is, that red-green shade blindness is a sex attached recessive trait and also blue-yellow shade blindness is a autosomal leading trait.

sex linked: encoded on the sex chromosome X; guys only have one of castle (XY) compared to ladies (XX).autosomal: encoded no on the sex chromosome, same for men and also women.dominant: if it is encoded on one chromosome, girlfriend really endure from it.recessive: if you have another healthy chromosome, the won’t present up.

If you combine this every together, we have more colorblind guys than women. — Why is that?

Color remote inheritance pattern

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Red-Green shade Blindness Inheritance Pattern

The over genetic encodings lead us directly to the inheritance pattern. This will additionally show us on a glance, why there are an ext men experiencing from color blindness 보다 women.

The diagram on the right mirrors the inheritance pattern of red-green color blindness, i beg your pardon is by far the many common form of color vision deficiency. Together you deserve to see, this is a disorder i m sorry is passed on native a grandfather to his grandson, vice versa, the mother is only a carrier that it. A carrier is not impacted because the trait is recessive. This reasons much an ext men to be red-green colorblind, and even more women come be carrier of this shade vision deficiency. Girlfriend can likewise learn native this diagram, that a woman have the right to only be red-green colorblind if both of her parents room at least carrying the an illness encoded in their genes.

Am i the just colorblind person?

No, definitely not. Shade blindness is a very common an illness which is uncovered all over the world. Various scientific studies show, that about 8% of every men and 0.5% of all women are colorblind. This numbers room supported by different studies and are about the same all about the world. The high difference between men and also women is result from the truth we just learned, the the many common kind red-green color blindness is a recessive sex-linked trait.

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Knowing this numbers you can also compute some an extremely interesting probabilities in color vision deficiency:

Approximately every 500st handshake is between two colorblind people.It is nearly sure (probability: 94%) that at the very least one out of a football team is colorblind.If you choose 100 persons randomly, over there is a tiny possibility (

In the next short article of the collection Color remote Essentials, us will have actually a closer look in ~ the different species of color blindness. The common and likewise the really uncommon ones.