Different Types of Color Blindness 2022 | A Simple Explanation

After passing a colorblind test your result would be a strange medical name that most probably you never heard of that in your entire life. We can all agree that medical terms and names are complicated, often derived from Greek or Latin and we need some help to understand them well. In this article, you can easily understand everything about different types of color blindness.

The terminology of the "colorblind" word can be misleading. Most colorblind people can see many colors but not as broad as others. It is extremely rare to see in black and white.

How Color Blindness Works

The human eye sees color through wavelengths of light processed in the retina. Within the retina, photoreceptors called rods and cones are responsible for passing the information received from the wavelengths of light to the brain.

While rods are sensitive to the wavelengths of light responsible for night vision, cones are responsible for color vision.

How Color Blindness Works
There are three types of cones: red, green, and blue cones.

See From The Eyes Of A Colorblind - 35 Simulated Images


In instances of normal color vision, this process would give the ability to see all colors by using the cones sensitive to the three red, green, or blue wavelengths of light at the right point of sensitivity.

Color blindness will occur when the cones fail to respond to the variations and points of sensitivity in wavelengths appropriately. When one or more of the cones cannot respond properly to send the right message to the brain, we are unable to see the colors correlated to those cones.


Normal color vision is known as trichromacy–tri because it uses all three types of cones correctly allowing us to see so many brilliant colors.

Usually, when people talk about color blindness, they are referring to the most common forms of red-green color blindness.


The most common form of colorblindness is known as red-green color blindness and is actually a grouping of a few disorders with similar effects on vision.1


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Different Types of Color Blindness

There are seven official diagnoses of color blindness. Four different types of color blindness fall in the red-green category, and two different types of color blindness fall in the blue-yellow category.


Monochromacy

1. Achromatopsia Total color blindness


Blue-yellow

2. Tritanopia – Individuals have no blue cones.

3. Tritanomaly – Individuals have blue cones and can usually see some shades of blue.


Red-green

4. Protanopia – Individuals have no red cones.

5. Protanomaly – Individuals have red cones and can usually see some shades of red.

6. Deuteranopia – Individuals have no green cones.

7. Deuteranomaly – Individuals have green cones and can usually see some shades of green.

 

Monochromacy Color Blindness

1. Achromatopsia

Achromatopsia or total color blindness occurs in only one in every 33,000 people. People with monochromacy see no color at all. For these individuals, the world exists in black and white, much like an old-time television. The concomitant light sensitivity often transforms everyday tasks into difficult chores.

Types of color blindness - Monochromacy Achromatopsia Color Blindness - colorblindguide.com
 

Blue-yellow Color Blindness

Blue-yellow color blindness is less common. The two types of color blindness in this category both make it difficult to tell the difference between blue and green and yellow and red. There are two types of blue-yellow color blindness:


2. Tritanopia (aka blue-blind) – Individuals have no blue cones.

with tritanopia are unable to perceive ‘blue’ light. 2

Blue-yellow color blindness - Tritanopia Color Blindness


3. Tritanomaly (aka blue-weak) – Individuals have blue cones and they can usually see some shades of blue.

Blue-yellow color blindness - Tritanomaly Color Blindness
 

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Red-green Color Blindness

People with both red and green deficiencies live in a world of murky greens where blues and yellows stand out.

  • Browns, oranges, shades of red, and green are easily confused.

  • Both types will confuse some blues with some purples and both types will struggle to identify pale shades of most colors.


The types of red-green color blindness fall into four different categories.

4. Protanopia (aka red-blind) – Individuals have no red cones.

People with protanopia are unable to perceive any ‘red’ light,

Red-green color blindness - Protanopia Color Blindness

Protanopes are more likely to confuse:

  • Black with many shades of red

  • Dark brown with dark green, dark orange, and dark red

  • Some blues with some reds, purples, and dark pinks

  • Mid-greens with some oranges


5. Protanomaly (aka red-weak) – Individuals have red cones and can usually see some shades of red.

Red-green color blindness - Protanomaly Color Blindness


6. Deuteranopia (aka green-blind) – Individuals have no green cones, and they are unable to perceive ‘green’ light

Deuteranopes are more likely to confuse:-

  • Mid-reds with mid-greens

  • Blue-greens with grey and mid-pinks

  • Bright greens with yellows

  • Pale pinks with light grey

  • Mid-reds with mid-brown

  • Light blues with lilac


7. Deuteranomaly (aka green-weak) – Individuals have green cones and can usually see some shades of green.

Red-green color blindness - Deuteranomaly Color Blindness
 

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CONCLUSION

The most common types of color blindness are those in the red-green category. 3

Different types of colorblindness 2021


Are there currently any treatments for color-blindness?


There are no preventative treatments as it's genetic. However colored filters, spectacles, and contact lenses have been introduced that can alter someone's color perception. They might allow the wearer to see a few more colors or colors nearer to how a person with normal color vision would see them, but it doesn't really solve the issue. Color blindness affects so many aspects of our life. You can learn some tips & tricks at this online training course designed for colorblind people. Click on the links below:



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Amir Kosari is a colorblind architect and designer with more than 15 years of experience.

He is the creator of the world's first online training programs for colorblind people. These training programs helped thousands of colorblind people (children, adults, designers) who used to struggle with colors. 

If you have any questions related to color blindness or our programs, schedule a FREE call with us, or send a message using the contact form.

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