I have poor vision of colours - Am I just getting old?

I have poor vision of colours

If you are suffering from a poor vision of colours there are a number of different conditions you could be suffering from. Poor colour vision is an inability to see the difference between certain colours, but colour can still be seen.

Poor vision colour

This condition is typically inherited and men are more likely to be born with poor colour vision. Most people who suffer from this condition can’t tell the difference between certain shades of green and red. In less common situations, they can’t tell the difference between yellow and blue.

Some medications and certain eye diseases can also cause poor colour vision. These are listed below.


Some conditions that can cause colour vision problems are sickle cell anaemia, diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease, macular degeneration, glaucoma, chronic alcoholism, Parkinson’s disease, and leukaemia. The colour deficit may improve if the underlying condition is treated.

Optic nerve problem

Your optic nerve is the area of the eye that brings stimuli from the cones and rods to the brain. Problems such as swelling, inflammation, and tumours can lead to symptoms such as loss of colour vision, blurred vision, headache, floaters, eye discomfort or pain, vision loss, or nausea. If you experience any of the following symptoms alongside your poor vision of colours you should get yourself checked out.

Certain medications

Some medications can alter colour vision, such as some drugs that treat high blood pressure, heart problems, erectile dysfunction, nervous disorders, infections and psychological problems.


Sometimes your poor vision of colours can be associated with the natural process of ageing. Often as we age our colour vision begins to deteriorate and we see colours more poorly.


If you are suffering from cataracts, they can “wash out” colour vision, which makes colours appear less bright, making them more difficult to see. You can rectify this situation with cataract surgery. If you are suffering from accompanied pain in your eyes and poor vision in general, you should get checked for cataracts with an eye examination.

White dot syndrome

This is part of a group of inflammatory conditions that are known by white dots in the choroid and retina. In some cases, the cause is not known, and in others, it is believed to be an autoimmune condition. Symptoms include poor vision of colour, blurred vision, light sensitivity, floaters, vision loss, and metamorphopsia.

When should I see an optician

If your poor vision of colours is causing you problems, or you have other symptoms alongside it, including eye pain or discomfort, loss of vision, floaters, blurred vision etc, then it’s best to gain a proper diagnosis from your optician to ensure you receive the correct treatment.

Search for a local optician

Discover quality frames and personalised fitting service at your local independent optician.