Irlen syndrome?!

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by lovelyboy, Mar 5, 2012.

  1. lovelyboy

    lovelyboy Member

    Hi, just wanted you to know I have learned about a new syndrome yesterday, wondered how many of our kids might be suffering from this without we even knowing it!
    Appearantly its something to do with the brain overreacting to sensory stimuli through the eyes....causing extreme light sensitivity, even contributing to adhd, behaviour problems, dyslexia, reading difficulties, poor consentration, exct.
    If this is diagnosed prescription spesific tinted glasses can be help relieve symptoms!

    Just thought I will let you know!:)
  2. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    Helen Irlen is a Sydney doctor who identified this back in the 1970s. My nephew was identified as having this problem and wore coloured glasses. Back then, to see the Sydney specialist team was expensive and there was a long waiting list, but the info was sent to a local optometrist near where my sister and her son lived. The boy was checked out with different colours and shades to see what seemed to work best for him; what he ended up with were actually dark grey.

    A young friend of ours (he's about 12 years old) has been diagnosed with Irlen syndrome as well as Asperger's and ADHD.

    The manifestation of Irlen syndrome is primarily dyslexia; but it is dyslexia which specifically responds to reducing the range of sensory input in colour frequency range. Every individual responds to a different frequency of preference and trial and error can be all that is needed.

    If you want to check it out, read up on it but perhaps (lateral thinking here) get in touch with a local dramatic theatre and ask to 'play with' their lighting gels. Get the child to look at a page of text through different colours (and combinations of different colours) to see if he/she notices any difference. Take notes as you do this and if you can find out, note the specific colour that seems to work best (ie the frequency of light that is transmitted through the gel).

    It's the cheapest way to do this, at least to begin with.

  3. buddy

    buddy New Member

    hey TeDo, didn't you say difficult child 1 can't read text when it is black on white? Marg, would that be in any way part of it? I know TeDo said that by putting a colored strip or gel to change the background he can read much better. They sell different colored reading strips in sp ed catalogs and I know schools I have worked in have used them for kids. I never really asked why. Interesting to think it could be more extensive and that by tinting their glasses even further help could be provided.
  4. Bunny

    Bunny Guest

    My sister is a Special Education. teacher, and I remember her telling me once that there was a child in her school that had to be given tests on colored paper (I think they used blue) because he had trouble reading the text off of white paper. Is that the same thing?
  5. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    It's very much related. There is always more work going on, but as parents we try whatever we can (within reason) especially if we can do it without making too many sacrifices. Lateral thinking...

    I've known a number of students (including the young friend I mentioned) who need their schoolwork given to them on coloured paper. Getting schools to comply is not easy - my young friend was often not given the work on coloured paper as his IEP stated, and when he got upset would be sent to the principal's office and disciplined. I'm going to ask his mother if they've tried coloured lenses. Possibly it could be a problem if the colour is very intense. But surely it could resolve a lot of the problems with getting others to comply?

    Certainly we live in the right part of the world to get the help needed. Hmm..

  6. lovelyboy

    lovelyboy Member

    We are so fortunate that one of the 2 people quilified to assess this in our COUNTRY, practice in our town! What I found strange though is that this professional is an educational psychologist? Apaerantly it involves plenty of activities like block building, coloured cards, exct.......
    I know the optolmogist(sorry for the terrible spelling!)....does a basic test where he put transparent coloured paper on top of a white sheet with words on it and then ask if you can see the words better, if you can see the spaces forming rivers between the words....exct....he said, with my older son, that this is often a problem with kids with low sensory thresholds.....but my son, with his literal thinking didnt understand his instructions! LOL my son looked at him and said: No off corse their isnt rivers in the book!!!! Ha ha ha!
  7. TeDo

    TeDo Guest

    Yes, our Occupational Therapist (OT) discovered that problem with difficult child 1. She did some specific testing to determine if there was a problem (there was) and what color would help him. For difficult child 1, a blue plactic overlay (8x10) goes over the writing so difficult child 1 can read it. To me, it looks like the blue makes the black writing bolder. It works great for difficult child 1. She said it didn't seem to bother him except for reading and that the glasses are not covered by any insurances so it wasn't worth it. Thanks for remembering Buddy.
  8. buddy

    buddy New Member

    I thought when you mentioned about the glasses being not covered that it would be interesting to come up with some kind of clip on for kids who really do need it in other areas (like the sunglass clip ons) and if just for private there are the kind you get that are virtually disposable when you get drops in your eyes... you just slide them on your nose behind your glasses (or the surgery kind that go over glasses and could be used for kids who dont have glasses for other reasons)
  9. Readbetter

    Readbetter New Member

    If you want more information about Irlen Syndrome I suggest checking out their web sites. Irlen Clinics are in every country world wide. I am a senior screener and have seen the Irlen Spectral Filters make life changing positive difference for students and adults who have the syndrome.
    Irlen Spectral filters help people with post traumatic stress disorder who suffer from migraines too.
    I have a poster that shows the difference in brain activity when reading with and without Irlen filters. It is quite amazing.
    I have a student who has dyslexia and poor concentration. When he wears his lenses he can work for much longer without losing concentration than he does when he does not have them on.
    The science supports Irlen Syndrome and all education systems recognise it.
    Please research Irlen Syndrome and contact an Irlen Clinic for more information. Doing so could radically improve your child's life. My slogan for Irlen Spectral Filters is Clear Minds. Better Lives.
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2012
  10. Browney

    Browney New Member

    Hi, I learnt of Irlen Syndrome awhile ago and was shocked by the number of people who actually suffer from it without seeing the symptoms. Althought you can use tinted glasses, you can also buy tinted books and resources such as reading rulers.A school i visted awhile back had started using an assessment pack specifically aimed at diagnosing Irlens and what colour worked best from a company called Crossbow Education. Some of the kids there seemed alot happier by being able to read and write without 'everything going blurry' :pI've also had a look at their website and twitter and they seem good.