Helpful Hints

DEAR HELOISE: Why on Earth do so many residential streets have such poor lighting? For a great many people, night blindness is a reality. For others it's not too bad, but for the majority of us over 45, it's difficult to read street signs or find addresses after dark when you have night blindness.

I would have thought that having well-lighted streets all over town would be a priority for every city. Not only would it help those of us with night blindness, but it would also help prevent crime. Most thieves stay away from well-lighted areas. With all the cameras that businesses and individuals use these days, good lighting can also help the police identify criminals. It might help people who walk during the evenings as well.

Sadly, while our main streets are usually lit up like an airport runway, the side streets where most people live are often neglected and have very few street lights. Maybe there's one or two at each end of the street, but usually, they're not that well-lighted. It should be a priority for many small towns, but it is often overlooked!

-- Donna H.,

Carlsbad, N.M.

DEAR DONNA: We cannot diagnose or treat ourselves, so people who have (or suspect they have) night blindness need to see a doctor. There are several reasons for this problem, such as a lack of (or a low level of) vitamin A.

It might also be something else, such as cataracts or glaucoma, to name a few. Your best bet is to see an eye specialist and have them test your vision. A doctor can give you a formal diagnosis and a course of treatment if your problem is treatable. Don't delay getting this checked out. Make an appointment as soon as you can. Your vision is too important to neglect.

As for better lighting on our streets, I have to agree with you. Many people would be safer if cities dropped certain projects and paid for better lighting on their streets.

DEAR HELOISE: Thank you for all of your handy hints. A different addition to baked potatoes and potatoes skins is topping them with French onion dip instead of sour cream. Yummy.

-- Kathy Powers,

Little Rock

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