It seems that I come across so many terms that I am unaware of. With this in mind and hoping that I am not alone in the dark, I decided to do an ongoing series on “What the Heck Is…?” As I come across terms or things I don’t understand, I will write a post to help us develop a basic understanding.
When I was reading the book Rock Paper Scissors by Alice Feeney, I came across a condition called Face Blindness. I thought, “what the heck is face blindness?” Let’s find out.
Face blindness is a neurological disorder that is also called Prosopagnosia. This condition can be caused by a stroke or traumatic brain injury, or for some people, it may be present at birth. The disorder is characterized by the inability to recognize faces. The severity of this condition varies, and some with a severe case have an inability to recognize their own face.
There is not a cure for face blindness. People with this condition have to learn to compensate for their inability to recognize faces. They may compensate by focusing on a person’s other characteristics such as physical features, voice, or mannerisms to identify someone.
About two percent of the population suffers from face blindness. It can be debilitating in that social situations and building relationships become more difficult.
There is a lot more out there about face blindness, but I thought I would give you an overview of what it is. I have not met anyone with this condition, and I did not encounter it in my many years as a nurse. Hopefully, someday they will find a cure.