Difficulty in negotiating familiar external spaces, verbally describing their physical layout or relative spatial relationships, or creating topographical maps, such as the floor plan of one’s house or describing the major thoroughfares of their city.
Although often honed to a much finer degree in the blind, people typically have reasonably good mental maps of the physical layouts of familiar areas. Such maps enable them to negotiate their way around their house at night when the electricity goes off or to travel from one part of the city to another, especially when forced to take a different route because of road closures. In its most basic form, topographical orientation represents a mental blueprint that allows an individual to appreciate from memory, landmarks, the location of routes, places or objects relative to others, as well as direction sense, including relative distances involved. Topographical disorientation...