Substance use and sight loss: A guide for professionals

October 2015

Sarah Galvani, Wulf Livingston and Hannah Morgan

Only a small proportion of people face both sight loss and problematic substance use, and professionals’ current approaches are not equipped to serve these individuals. Primarily for substance use and sight loss professionals, this guide funded by Thomas Pocklington Trust provides practical tips and emphasises the need for joint working in this niche area.

Key facts:

People with sight loss face challenges that increase their vulnerability to developing problems with substance or alcohol use, including chronic pain, stigma and social isolation.

Case studies from around the world suggest alcohol and other drug use has played a significant role in sudden sight loss and sight deterioration.

Clear and sensitive communication with people facing sight loss is essential, alongside the provision of local and targeted information.

There are several ways that professionals in each area can collaborate to provide a better service, including the development of accessible information, knowledge exchange and shared training.

How can this research help?

As there are a wide range of substance use and sight loss services, there is no ‘one size fits all’ response. The information in this guide equips professionals with practical advice and current best practice approaches.

Links: Substance Use and Sight Loss: A Guide for Substance Use and Sight Loss Professionals – PDF version.

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