If you've never experienced color-blindness yourself, it's pretty hard to imagine what it might be like. Turns out, it's much more complicated than just seeing the world in black and white.
"Color-blindness should best be thought of as looking through the world with a colored lens that blunts and washes out 'true' color perception," says Barrett Katz, M.D., M.B.A., faculty attending at the Division of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences at Montefiore Health System. "It is not blindness at all, but rather a deficiency in the manner in which those affected see color and distinguish between colors."
More often not, Dr. Katz tells us, color-blindness is genetic, though it can sometimes be caused by damage to optic nerves. It's also more common in men, with around 8% of the male population affected, compared with 0.5% of the female population. Also, color-blindness isn't just one thing: There are actually several types of color-blindness that vary in their severity and in the colors affected.
Color-blindness can affect daily life by making it harder to read color-coded information such as traffic lights (or to figure out whether your outfit is cute or nah), but if you don't have it, it's tough to picture what it would be like. But thanks to a few clever GIFs from Clinic Compare, a medical consulting company based in the U.K., we might be able to understand color-blindness a little better. Ahead, check out some animations that will help you see what it's really like to experience various types of color-blindness.