Altered Color Perception

Posted by julianned @julianned, Tue, Jun 25 4:25pm

Aside from my abnormal sputum production and torso pain (which I posted about in other groups), a new issue with my vision has developed in the past several days where, when I wake up things are the wrong color (white pillows are neon blue and green, or the ceiling neon yellow) and it lasts 1 or 2 seconds and then the pigmentation shifts to normal — bizarre. It has happened the past 4 mornings and also when I open my eyes after lying down in acupuncture. The shapes and clarity of objects are fine, but the color off. Has anyone heard or experienced this? Today I saw an ophthalmologist who examined me and said that structurally everything looked good.

Hi @julianned, I have not heard of altered color vision before. Looking at this article on Mayo Clinic (https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/poor-color-vision/symptoms-causes/syc-20354988), it states that causes may be
– Certain medications. Some medications can alter color vision, such as some drugs that treat heart problems, high blood pressure, erectile dysfunction, infections, nervous disorders and psychological problems.
– Aging. Your ability to see colors deteriorates slowly as you age.
– Chemicals. Exposure to some chemicals in the workplace, such as carbon disulfide and fertilizers, may cause loss of color vision.

Have you had a change in medications or exposure to chemicals?

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@colleenyoung

Hi @julianned, I have not heard of altered color vision before. Looking at this article on Mayo Clinic (https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/poor-color-vision/symptoms-causes/syc-20354988), it states that causes may be
– Certain medications. Some medications can alter color vision, such as some drugs that treat heart problems, high blood pressure, erectile dysfunction, infections, nervous disorders and psychological problems.
– Aging. Your ability to see colors deteriorates slowly as you age.
– Chemicals. Exposure to some chemicals in the workplace, such as carbon disulfide and fertilizers, may cause loss of color vision.

Have you had a change in medications or exposure to chemicals?

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Hi Colleen thanks for responding to me. None of the medications I am on have that as a known side effect. I have no known exposure to Carbon Monoxide. I did some research and learned that if you have sun in your eyes when you sleep you can wake up with pigmentation problems. I have since been sleeping with a sheet over my face, which has actually helped. Other than those prior times I noted and now once more after acupuncture, I have not had the issue.

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Unfortunately the temporary break from this issue did not last! I have been experiencing it. Very bizarre.

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@julianned – that is unfortunate that the temporary break from the altered perception of colors in your vision didn't last and you are experiencing it again.

I'd like to invite into this discussion for any thoughts a couple of members who've mentioned color or other relevant changes in their eyesight, @phayslip @meningone. @rosemarya @jenniferhunter also may have some thoughts for you.

How were things this morning with your vision when you woke up, julianned?

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Thanks for inviting those individuals! I am interested to see if any have comments based on their experiences. I experienced it again this morning, this time something white appearing green. Yesterday, upon opening my eyes after accupuncture, I experienced black squiggles on a white wall. Like in the other instances, the color adjusted within a second.

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@julianned

Thanks for inviting those individuals! I am interested to see if any have comments based on their experiences. I experienced it again this morning, this time something white appearing green. Yesterday, upon opening my eyes after accupuncture, I experienced black squiggles on a white wall. Like in the other instances, the color adjusted within a second.

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@julianned When your eyes fatigue because of staring at a color for a long time, you will start to see a complimentary color instead. You can test that by staring at a shape like a colored dot for a few minutes, then look at a white sheet of paper and you'll see the afterimage in a complimentary color. The primary colors of light are red, blue and green. I think your color shift is happening because of sleeping in the sunlight and your retinas are not getting any rest. The light goes through the eye lids. Can you try a black out mask for sleeping or blackout shades on the windows if you are indoors? I have great color acuity because I was trained to see the nuances when I went to art school, and I've noticed that my eyes see color a little differently. One eye sees a slight red cast, and the other sees a slight green cast. Color vision comes from "cones" which are nerve endings on the retinas. Nerve impulses involve neuro-transmiters which are molecules that have to cross the gap between nerves to send the impulse along the the path to the brain where vision is interpreted, so your retinas have to do this and this process will fatigue with constant stimulation. When the cones for a particular color fatigue, they are less sensitive to that color which makes the opposite color of light more effective because it's opponent has fatigued and kind of quit the game. This study describes this effect of chromatic adaptation in a blue vs yellow color shift. Blue and yellow are opposites for light colors, and all colors are present in white light. When you see a rainbow or use a prism, the wavelengths for the different colors are separated and displayed. See page 13 of this study. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC224321/pdf/pnas00145-0005.pdf

I use color balanced LED lights for photography and accidentally looked at an LED panel at close range with it set to 5500 K which is a daylight setting with a bluish cast. Exposure to the blue light can be damaging to the retinas over time which is why there are blue blocking lenses in glasses. Even though I looked away immediately, I still saw an image in one eye of the dots on the LCD panel for a while and I worried it might be permanent. I saw my ophthalmologist who didn't see anything wrong on the retina. After a couple months, it went away on it's own, so I presume that whatever happened in there must have healed. If you are seeing dark shadowy things that move when you move your eye, those are likely floaters which are the shadows of some cellular debris that are cast on the retina. I have those too. I have found that taking astaxanthan supplements have helped my vision get better and sharper, and also my nearsightedness has improved. That is a zeaxanthin and vision supplements have these. Sometimes improvement of nearsightedness happens as people age. I also think it has something to do with taking off my glasses to do my art work and my eyes worked a bit more to focus at that distance. I have a biology background, and I'm not a health professional and this is just my experience and how I understand how the body works. Hopefully some of this will explain in simple terms about how it works.

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Thank you for taking the time to write all of this and answer my post! I purchased a sleep mask so I will test that out and see if it works. At first I did think that maybe there was some link to the light, because my room has great sun exposure. However, I slept at my grandma's house in a very dark room and still experienced the problem. I wonder if, as you said, the long term exposure made my couple of nights in darkness irrelevant. I also recently took one of those send-away ancestry and health DNA tests. My results showed that I carry the gene for AMD, which is not shocking to me because my grandmother and my great aunt both have macular degeneration. I will look into the supplement you mentioned, too. Thanks for your help!

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@julianned

Thank you for taking the time to write all of this and answer my post! I purchased a sleep mask so I will test that out and see if it works. At first I did think that maybe there was some link to the light, because my room has great sun exposure. However, I slept at my grandma's house in a very dark room and still experienced the problem. I wonder if, as you said, the long term exposure made my couple of nights in darkness irrelevant. I also recently took one of those send-away ancestry and health DNA tests. My results showed that I carry the gene for AMD, which is not shocking to me because my grandmother and my great aunt both have macular degeneration. I will look into the supplement you mentioned, too. Thanks for your help!

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@julianned You're welcome. I hope you'll check back in and let us know if your experimentation with a sleep mask is successful. Astaxanthin is what gives salmon a red color. I found a study that talks about nutrition and glycemic index, Omega 3 & 6 intake and zeaxanthint for prevention of macular degeneration. An excerpt states,

"lutein and zeaxanthin have the ability to absorb blue light before it reaches the photoreceptors" so it functions to prevent damaging blue light exposure."

This also talks about the regenerative functions in the retina and how the body works to remove damaged photreceptors and how that is different in macular degeneration. Here is a quote:

"Photoreceptors are exposed to extensive oxidative stress in the form of light and oxygen [6]. As a result, the outer 10% of photoreceptor segments are shed each night. These must be engulfed, degraded and the debris removed by the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE), which lies posterior to the photoreceptors [7]. Since one RPE cell services 30 photoreceptors, the RPE has among the highest degradative burdens in the body. In addition, the RPE is involved in maintaining the nutriture of the photoreceptors. Since photoreceptors do not have their own blood supply, it is crucial for nutrients from the choroidal blood supply to cross Bruch’s membrane and enter the RPE and photoreceptors [6,8,9]. Adequate nutritional support to the RPE also facilitates efficient turnover of photoreceptors."

I think the take away message here is that disease prevention can be achieved by sensible eating to reduce inflammation and oxidative stress in the body. The body expends a lot of energy in maintenance to keep the retinas working. It isn't just eyesight that depends on this, it's everything else too. Here is the study. It's pretty interesting.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3738980/

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Wow I just started looking at the study–very interesting. A little overwhelming, but it is relieving to know there are things I can do now to lower my risk. I definitely need to incorporate the dietary elements (although I am average/slender, I have a sweet tooth and I don't eat seafood so I am guessing I don't have a lot of the omega 3s in my diet). I wore the sleeping mask the past two nights and have not experienced the color shifting so that is good. I will keep you updated! Thank you everyone for your help and thanks for the various resources! I definitely will read them more closely over the weekend.

Liked by Jennifer Hunter

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@julianned

Wow I just started looking at the study–very interesting. A little overwhelming, but it is relieving to know there are things I can do now to lower my risk. I definitely need to incorporate the dietary elements (although I am average/slender, I have a sweet tooth and I don't eat seafood so I am guessing I don't have a lot of the omega 3s in my diet). I wore the sleeping mask the past two nights and have not experienced the color shifting so that is good. I will keep you updated! Thank you everyone for your help and thanks for the various resources! I definitely will read them more closely over the weekend.

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@julianned The omega 3s have to do with the food chain. If you eat grass fed meat, they are higher in Omega 3 because it is in the grass. Corn fed meats have a lot more of the Omega 9s than Omega 3 which is from the corn. 9s are highest in corn and those are inflammatory. Fish oil is high in Omega 3 because of the algae in the ocean plankton that the fish eat. You can also use flax oil, it has a lot of Omega 3. It needs to be kept away from oxygen because it spoils. You can grind flax seed and use it right away, keep it in the fridge, or take it in a capsule. If you add a lot of vegetables to your diet, you'll add omega 3. Some of the brands for fish oil test for mercury levels and harvest fish from cleaner areas of the ocean, like Carlson's. I'm so glad you asked the question about your vision. Isn't it exciting to know that the choices you make now can change your future for the better? I knew about the supplements because my father in law had macular degeneration, but I didn't know why it worked and how it helped until I found the study. I don't eat much seafood because of the mercury. I have cut most sugars out of my diet and I use stevia to sweeten my coffee. Eating healthy like that will also reduce your risk for heart disease and cancer as well as eye sight issues.

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Thank you so much for this thorough information. Most of this i was unaware of.
Sometimes we look more into the complicated reports, when its the simple things our parents and grandparents practiced. Again, thank you

Liked by Jennifer Hunter

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@jaguar737

Thank you so much for this thorough information. Most of this i was unaware of.
Sometimes we look more into the complicated reports, when its the simple things our parents and grandparents practiced. Again, thank you

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@jaguar737 Thank you and you're welcome. I learned something too.

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