It’s thought that up to 20% of the population suffers from visual stress. Haven’t heard of it before? That’s because many sufferers believe their symptoms to be normal.

These include:

• Headaches and eyestrain
• Letters blurring or moving about on the page
• Letters changing size on the page
• Feeling tired when reading or soon after

The severity of the symptoms can vary — but visual stress can make reading a challenge and has been linked to both dyslexia and visual learning difficulties.

Scientific research has shown that coloured filters worn in glasses and coloured plastic sheets laid over text — known as overlays — can help some children and adults to read. Placing colour over text can reduce the distortions that visual stress sufferers sometimes describe. They can enable some children to read text more fluently and with less discomfort and headaches.

Some Opticians are able to offer specialist services to determine if using colour can help to reduce the symptoms of visual stress. At Pinder’s, we evaluate our clients using a Coloured Overlay Assessment which checks the effects of a wide range of colours. Following a successful trial using a coloured overlay for a few weeks, the Optometrist will then carry out an Intuitive Colorimetry to prescribe coloured lenses. During this assessment, our clients will be advised on the correct colour tint that will help to reduce discomfort and distortion.

While early identification of visual stress — and treatment — can have a big impact on a child’s development, the use of coloured overlays and tinted lenses can help adults too!

If you’re experiencing symptoms of visual stress, or have any concerns, get in touch with your local Pinder’s branch today.