What is Visual Stress?
Some people with no apparent problems with their eyes, report that it is "uncomfortable" to look at certain patterns - including a page of words. Some people find that the words appear to move, wobble or flicker while others see colours or patterns in the words. This tends to make reading for any length of time uncomfortable and can lead to eyestrain, headaches or even migraines.
For reasons that are still not well understood, these disturbing effects can often be reduced or even eliminated by placing a sheet of coloured plastic (an overlay) over the page or using coloured lenses. Interestingly, the colour required to achieve this varies from one person to another and the colour can be different for overlays and lenses.
For some the benefits may be slight but for others the effects can be dramatic, significantly increasing reading speed and fluency and reducing headaches and eyestrain.
A school teacher in New Zealand (Olive Meares) and and educational psychologist in the US (Helen Irlen) were among the first to report this phenomenon so the condition has become known as Meares-Irlen syndrome or simply Visual Stress.
For a review of the history and scientific studies related to Visual Stress, click here.
We have also developed a range of software to help identify those who are likely to benefit from colour. The software is used throughout the world by teachers, educational psychologists and eye care professionals (optometrists and orthoptists).
As a company we are dedicated to making solutions for Visual Stress accessible to all by offering high-quality, evidence-based products at affordable prices.