The white cane is not a walking stick, it is much more than that. The white cane is actually a tool that is used to detect obstacles and changes in elevation as a blind or visually impaired person walks along a path. The cane is held out in front and swiped from left to write to make sure the path is clear. The cane is also used to identify landmarks to help with orientation along the path.
Some people that have some sight may carry an ID cane which is smaller and slimmer than a regular white cane to let others know they have trouble seeing. This cane is not meant for swiping from side to side. People that have some sight may still use a standard white cane.
I am visually impaired. I am blind in my right eye and have limited sight in my left eye. I use very thick glasses with a high prescription. I use a standard white cane when I am out on my own because I do not have depth perception so judging distances and seeing steps and curves is very hard for me. The cane warns me of curbs or steps ahead or of any obstacles in my way.
When you see someone that has some sight using a white cane please know they really do need it for safety reasons.
I should mention that the white cane has been given a splash of color in the recent years and now they can be customized in various color schemes. So, if you see a hot pink cane being swiped from side to side know that it serves as a white cane.
Now I want to share a video of how a white cane helps a visually impaired person independently navigate.
My theme for the 2021 Blogging from A to Z April Challenge is to give an overview of what it is like to have low vision. I will be sharing a new post going through the alphabet each day except Sundays.