Visual Stress

Visual stress (Myers-Irlen Syndrome) is sensitivity to visual patterns. Sometimes this can make reading more difficult. The symptoms can occur even if you have normal vision. For people who struggle with reading, it is estimated that 40% will be affected by visual stress.

Dyslexic individuals are more prone to experience visual stress.

Signs and Symptoms of visual stress include:

  • Letters and text appear to jumble, move or go double.
  • Reading is uncomfortable & fatiguing
  • Frequent migraines and headaches
  • Needing to use your finger/other objects as a guide when reading
  • Skipping or repeating words and lines when reading
  • Constantly changing the working distance of text to focus
  • Patterns visible when reading and getting increased glare from pages

At Louth Vision Centre we can investigate and help manage problems related to visual stress. Coloured overlays or colour-specific tinted lenses can help reduce the symptoms of visual stress, whilst simultaneously improving reading speed and accuracy.

The step-by-step process at Louth Vision Centre:

1. Full Eye Examination

The eye’s ability to focus together, poor coordination of the eyes and reduced muscle strength, can all influence reading ability. Therefore it is vital to do a full eye examination first to rule out any underlying causes of visual stress such as the need for spectacles and eye exercises.

Coloured Overlay and Colorimetry Test

If after the eye exam it is suggested further investigation for visual stress is required a colorimetry test will be conducted.

Using the digital ReadEZ colorimetry system, we can provide several solutions to reducing the symptoms of visual stress including:

  1. Coloured overlays
  2. Coloured reading guides
  3. Coloured tinted lenses

During the test, your optimum colour and tint will be identified, which we will then use to make the basis for any visual stress solutions we provide. The colour and tint needed are specific to the individual therefore this test allows providing the optimal colour to best to reduce visual stress symptoms.

Review and Manage

We will then continue to monitor progress over an agreed time scale with the individual or parent and fine-tune any coloured solutions being used as necessary.
Sometimes a new colour is required to give the maximum benefit hence a 6 monthly review is needed.