Struggling to Maintain Occupation While Dealing With Risk: The Experiences of Older Adults With Low Vision
OTJR: Occupation, Participation and Health
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The primary aim of this descriptive phenomenological study was to describe the core aspects of living with low vision in later life among older adults (aged 70 years and older) who had not accessed rehabilitation services for low vision. Thirty-four older adults from urban and rural areas participated in a semi-structured qualitative interview and a telephone follow-up. Drawing on an occupational science perspective and using Giorgi and Giorgi’s (2003) method of analysis, the essence of the experience of living with low vision was identified as struggling to maintain valued and necessary occupations while dealing with risk. Additional themes included enhanced sense of risk, striving for independence, and shrinking physical and social life spaces. Findings are interpreted in relation to occupational adaptation and environmental influences on occupation, and implications for the role of occupational therapists are discussed.