Setting Up the Home Office After Vision Loss
Ten Tips for Setting Up a Home Office
- If you have low vision, choose a space with ample lighting.
- Position your furniture and equipment to minimize glare.
- An L-shaped desk with a credenza provides a comfortable working surface with easy access to files and office equipment. However, if you only have a small area, like a nook in your kitchen, to work with, you can still set up an efficient, comfortable office area.
- Choose the best PC for your needs such as setting up a large monitor for low vision users or a screen magnification software with speech. Equip your monitor with an anti-glare screen.
- Mark your keyboard’s home keys (J and F), the 5 on your number pads and on/off switches with raised dots or brightly colored puff paint (or use a 3D pen such as Hi-Marks). This will enable you to see and feel the right keys, buttons and switches quickly.
- Magnification tools can make many of your tasks easier. A video magnifier (also known as a CCTV) can be very helpful for correspondence, paying bills, looking up phone numbers and addresses, or even viewing family photos.
- A combination of magnifiers—including handheld, stand, illuminated, and spectacle-mounted—are available to help you access visual material. For more information on magnifiers, see the Low Vision Optical Devices article.
- Place file documents you are currently working on in a portable expanding file folder on the surface of your desk rather than in a file drawer. When you do place files in a desk or file drawer, make use of hanging folders with labels that are above the file itself.
- Using paper with bold or raised lines can be helpful for writing and taking notes. Large print address books with plenty of bold tipped pens at the ready are handy for accessing or recording phone numbers and addresses. Smart phone contact lists are an easy way to keep track of phone numbers and addresses.
- Marking important buttons on your office equipment will make it easier to operate.
Ultimately, the success of any home office set up has to do with knowing your needs and abilities, so feel free to experiment with your office until it works for you.