What You Need to Know About Depth Perception - GUNNAR

What You Need to Know About Depth Perception

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depth perception

Sometimes understanding your eye problems is as simple as knowing what’s behind your symptoms. A term you might have heard, but not fully understood, depth perception, offers knowledge of one such problem. Depth perception refers to the measure of your ability to see objects in three dimensions, and judge movement and distance. When you have depth perception issues, it generally links back to other eye problems. Today we’ll help you administer an online depth perception test, and explain some of the implications of the results.

Depth Perception Test

Unless your eye doctor has already advised you on the subject, you likely can’t be sure if you have depth perception issues or not. So, to begin with, we’ll help you administer a quick test using the picture of a tennis ball below.

depth perception test
  1. Hold your extended index finger in front of the image of the tennis ball, roughly centered on the image, with your hand about six inches from your face.
  2. Focus your vision on the tennis ball. If your depth perception works well, you should see two slightly faint, slightly blurred images of your finger on both sides of the tennis ball. You should also be able to make out the complete image of the ball.
  3. Focus your vision, next, on your finger. Again, if the test goes well, you should see tow slightly faint, slightly blurred images of the tennis ball on both sides of your finger.

Follow the steps above, and you’ll have preliminary results. Whatever the results of the above test, of course, nothing matches the examination and advice of an eye doctor. If you think you might have serious problems with your depth perception, meet with an eye doctor so they can help you evaluate the seriousness. Either way, now that we have an initial understanding of your depth perception, we can discuss more of the details.

The Elements of Depth Perception

what is depth perception

To have proper depth perception, you need stereopsis, also called binocular stereoscopic vision. Binocular here refers simply to the idea that both of your eyes work consecutively and together to make a unified image. If only one eye comprehends depth properly, it is called monocular. The elements of vision that affect depth perception, as well explained by eyehealthweb.com, include:

  • Known size of an image on the retina: This is simply the eyes habitual memory of objective size.
  • Stereo Vision: This refers to how separate images in the eyes work together.
  • Moving Parallax: Objects at a further distance appear to move much slower than closer.
  • Retinal Disparity: Difference between what they eye expects and what it sees.
  • Fusion: The combined image of both eyes working together.
  • Interposition: Perception of overlapping objects.
  • Linear Perspective: The perceived size change as objects increase or decrease their distance from the eye.
  • Aerial Perspective: The color change eyes perceive at varying distances.
  • Light and Shade: Provides cues on shape and contour of an object.
  • Monocular Parallax: The change in relative perception of speed when you move your head.

The Causes of Depth Perception Issues

a woman experiencing depth perception issues

Often depth perception issues come in conjunction with other eye problems. Among those are the following:

Ways to Improve Depth Perception

If you struggle with depth perception issues, on their own or in conjunction with one of the above, combatting it should be a priority. Eyehealthweb.com, once again, comes through with an excellent offering of ways to improve depth perception.

  1. Eye Rolling: Rolling your eyes around, deliberately and regularly, helps strengthen the eye muscles. In turn, your depth perception will improve with time.
  2. Shifting Your Gaze: Slowly shifting your gaze from one object to another, often in conjunction with eye rolling, sharpens acuity and perception.
  3. Resting Your Good Eye: If you have a stronger eye, try resting it specifically. This is the principle behind an eye patch when prescribed to someone whose eyes both work. Covering your strong eye allows it to rest, and strengthens your weak eye.
  4. Low Light: Your eyes have to work harder in highly lit areas. Allowing your eyes to rest in lower light if you are struggling with depth perception offers a much-needed break that will help your vision overall, and particularly your depth perception.

If you have depth perception issues, you likely also experience blurred vision (as mentioned above). Knowing the causes of blurred vision will help you get to the bottom of your eye troubles. Learn more today about blurred vision and how to respond to it.

what is depth perception
ted richards 69x62 - What You Need to Know About Depth Perception

As a writer for the past 7 years, an online tutor, and a graduate student at Claremont Graduate University, Ted spends a lot of time in front of screens, and has felt for himself the negative effects of such extended exposure. Ted’s experience with digital technology has made him a crusader for the cause of blue light protection. He writes hoping to help others experience relief.

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