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20 Facts about Red-Green Color Blindness Everyone Should Know

There are, in total seven recognized types of color blindness. Four types of color blindness fall in the red-green category. In this article, I will share 20 facts about red-green color blindness that everyone should know.

1. What does it mean to be red-green colorblind?

It means that the colorblind individual will have difficulty recognizing and differentiating between colors that have some red or green as part of the whole color. For example, the purple color will look blue because the eye can't recognize the red color in purple.


2. How common is red-green color blindness?

99% of all colorblind people have red-green color blindness, and it's the most common form. There are more than 350 million colorblind people in the world, Just for scale, 1 in 12 men and 1 in 200 women are colorblind.


3. Why can't colorblind people see some colors?

Retina has two types of cells called cones and rods, Cone cells control the color vision by telling the brain that the color is red, green, blue, or a combination of them. When one of these cells doesn't work well and doesn't send the right signal, then the person will have trouble with seeing certain colors.

Why can't colorblind people see some colors?

4. What causes red-green color blindness?

Red-green color blindness is typically caused by genetic mutations. Color blindness occurs when there are genetic deficiencies with one or more of the three cones. For example, If just one of the pigments (Red cones, or Green cones) is missing in the retina, or two pigments are so close to each other, the person will have trouble seeing certain colors, resulting in different types of red-green color blindness.

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5. What is red-green color blindness called?

There are four different types of red-green color blindness. Protanopia and protanomaly types are related to the red cons, while deuteranopia and deuteranomaly are related to the green cones.

A. Protanopia – Individuals have no red cones.

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

C. Deuteranopia – Individuals have no green cones.

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

Deuteranomaly is by far the most common form of color blindness.

6. What is the difference between Deutan and Protan?

The deutan color blindness is related to the green cones in the retina. If the individual doesn't have it, It's deuteranopia type, but if he/she has it and it's close to another cone then it's deueranomaly.

The protan color blindness is related to the red cones in the retina. If the individual doesn't have it, It's protanopia type, but if he/she has it and it's close to another cone then it's protanomaly

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

7. What colors a protan colorblind person can't see?

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


8. What colors a deutan colorblind person can't see?

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


9. The severity of red-green color blindness

The effects of color vision deficiency can be mild, moderate, or severe. People with both red and green deficiencies live in a world of murky greens where blues and yellows stand out.

Most people with a moderate form of red-green color blindness will only be able to identify accurately 5 or so colored pencils from a standard box of 24 pencil crayons.

10. Current and future treatment options for color blindness?

Gene therapy can cure some types of color blindness. But currently, it is not available for the public and is not affordable for many.

For years, scientists have imagined gene therapy as a way to correct red-green color blindness. In 2009, researchers had a breakthrough when they cured red-green color blindness in adult monkeys using gene therapy, but there have not been clinical trials yet for gene therapy that aims to correct this type of color blindness in humans.

These trials, which use a similar approach as the one in Germany, are ongoing in the United States and in the U.K. If the approach works, it could open the door to correcting more common forms of color blindness, which are typically inherited.

A gene therapy designed to restore vision is already on the market, but in the United States, it costs $425,000 per eye.

colorblind children

11. Color blindness inherited from mother or father?

Red-green color blindness is a recessive sex-linked trait, which causes more men to be colorblind than women. More women than men are carriers of color blindness gene, even though they are not colorblind themselves.

  • A father can’t pass his red-green color blindness on to his sons.

  • If a woman is red-green colorblind, all her sons will also be colorblind.


12. Is it possible that a colorblind person dream of colors he can't see?

In theory, our brains have the processing power to see all the normal colors. Our eyes just lack the ability to send that signal to the brain. There is no scientific proof of this being able to happen or not.

There are red-green colorblind people (Protan type) that can't see purple, but they saw it in their dream.


13. What is the most common daily struggle for a red-gree colorblind?

Do colorblind people have trouble with traffic lights? The answer is no, most colorblind people learned to tell traffic lights by the individual light placement;

For example, when it comes to horizontal signals: Red is always at the LEFT, and in vertical signals: Red is always on the TOP.

However, one of the daily struggles for red-green colorblind people is the battery charge displayer that simply lights up a RED light when charging, and then a GREEN light when finished. Most of the time it's not possible for colorblind people to see when the battery is fully charged.


14. Red-green color blindness in the classroom

Most colorblind people can't tell the color of a tiny thing like one hair. They cant tell it's red, brown, or green! They usually see it as black. It's often the same for makers on the whiteboard.

For example, if the classroom is not bright enough, or the student is not sitting so close to the whiteboard. Most of the colors written on a whiteboard will appear as black or, if they are bright colors like light green, red-green colorblind students might not see it at all!

But there is a simple solution, if teachers used different types of lines, like in the picture below, to make sure everyone can see and understand.

colorblind friendly in calssroom

If Your Child Is Color Deficient, You Need To Learn More About His/Her Condition.

There is fun & engaging color training for color deficient children to help them learn colors through rhymes and songs. Click here to learn more

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Efficient and responsive packages tailored to meet the specific needs of color deficient students in your school. Click here to learn more


15. Can women be colorblind?

Approximately 1 in 200 females are colorblind (0.5%), but colorblindness is more common among males (8%). Colorblind People Population


16. How do red-green colorblind see the rainbow?


17. Can a red-green colorblind person be an artist or designer?

Yes, there are so many successful colorblind artists & designers who make amazing artwork. Unlike what you might expect, most of these creative colorblind artists are indeed making colorful artworks, and only a few do black and white.

colorblind artist and designer
Daniel Arsham

If you would like to learn how to use colors in your projects and be a successful colorblind artist or designer you can sign up for online training for "The Creative". Click here to learn more


18. Are there any advantages to being colorblind?

The most common colors used in advertising are Red, Green, Orange, Blue, and Purple. Colorblind people can't see most of these colors, advertisers can't make them take action to buy unnecessary products! So naturally colorblind people tend to spend less and save more!

Also, colors often cause distractions and can even affect our concentration! However colorblind people see less color and, as a result, get distracted less than other people. It helps them to focus on specific tasks, with a smaller tendency for distraction, which is a crucial part of any success. 10 Shocking Advantages of Being Colorblind


19. Process of seeing

How do colorblind people describe the world? People look at something, and one of the first things they think about is what color it is, but colorblind people don't ever think about it. If they look at a tree, they think about its shape, the texture of it. when their brain kind of comes up with a list of things that sort of relate to what that object is, color is not one of them. Most colorblind people don't even think about what color it is.


20. Red-green colorblindness in children

Most parents of colorblind children don’t know that they have a colorblind child and in most cases, the child won’t realize it either. Colorblind school children may fall behind in subjects where colors are a necessary part of learning, and recent research studies have shown that ‘color blindness’ has a deep effect on a child's psychology, if not treated well. It affects a child's confidence, self-esteem and the thought of ‘being different” can lead to a child’s behavioral issues like the feeling of embarrassment and social withdrawal.

ColorWill created a guide for parents/children that gives you clear step-by-step guidance and advice on how to explain color blindness to your child, how to help them learn more about colors, and help you understand how your child sees the world.

I recommend joining this online to improve your child's experience of life. Click here to learn more



Efficient and responsive packages tailored to meet the specific needs of color deficient students in your school. Click here to learn more

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Amir Kosari is a colorblind architect and designer.

He is the creator of the world's first online training program for colorblind people. Thousands of colorblind people (children, adults, and designers) who previously struggled with colors were helped by these FREE training programs.  Read more

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