The Irlen Institute Celebrates 40 Years of Colored Overlays

February 16, 2023 at 17:11

Long Beach, California -

The Irlen Institute, the pioneer and world leader in spectral filter color lens technology, is happy to celebrate 40 years of research on colored overlays. This method of using colored overlays was originally discovered by Helen Irlen in 1983. It is a low-cost assistive technology that has been used by millions of adults and children all over the world to offer a solution for a visual processing problem known as Irlen Syndrome, which is also known as visual stress and scotopic sensitivity. The Irlen Method has garnered millions of fans by offering a long-term, expertly-developed solution for headaches, reading problems, migraines, light sensitivity, autism, ADHD, and several other light-based difficulties by directly addressing the root problem of the brain’s inability to process visual information and certain wavelengths of light.

Irlen Syndrome, which is also known as Meares-Irlen Syndrome, visual stress, or scotopic sensitivity syndrome, is a perceptual processing issue and not an optical problem. It has to do with the brain’s lack of ability to process visual information. It tends to run in families and is not currently identified by other standardized medical, optimical, or educational tests. It affects various areas, such as: behavior, academic and work performance, concentration, ability to sit still, and attention. It actually manifests itself differently for each person. It is currently not curable and is typically a lifetime impediment to learning and performance.

Symptoms of Irlen Syndrome, include: light sensitivity; reading problems; visual and physical discomfort; attention and concentration problems; writing problems; depth perception; perceptual distortions; and other characteristics. Light sensitivity means the affected individual is bothered by glare, bright lights, fluorescent lights, sunlight, and sometimes lights at night. Some people may experience physical symptoms, feeling sleepy, tired, anxious, dizzy, or irritable. Others may experience mood changes, headaches, restlessness, and difficulty in remaining focused. Reading problems may include: misreading words, poor comprehension, reading in dim light, problems tracking from line to line, skipping of words or lines, taking breaks, reading slowly or hesitantly, avoiding reading, and losing place.

The Irlen® Overlays offered by The Irlen® Institute are the original colored overlay technology. They’re the only colored overlays available that are backed by over three decades of research and used by school districts all over the world. For those who suffer from difficulties with writing, depth perception, math, night driving, or the environment, colored filters worn as glasses might be the best treatment. However, the colored overlays are a vital first step in finding out if the Irlen Method works for them and can provide relief. Colored overlays can: enhance print clarity and stability; decrease strain and fatigue; get rid of headaches and eye-strain; improve comprehension; allow the person to track and keep one’s place while reading; make reading faster; and enable the person to read longer and with greater comfort.

Irlen® colored overlays are currently available in two different forms. One is the original Irlen colored overlays, which are great for putting over paper and books. And the Irlen Clings™ are their solution for computer screens, iPads, iPhones, e-readers, and other electronic screens. These are provided with optical-grade clear adhesive that allow them to be removable, reusable, and offer the same Irlen colored overlay protection provided by the original colored overlays. It is important to note that the original color formulas (10 Irlen® colors) have remained the same. With the overlays, people can see and feel the results instantly. And because phones, tablets, and computer screens can cause a lot of distress for people with Irlen Syndrome, the tech companies now include a color screen filter in the accessibility settings of their devices. However, not all devices have this, and it is important to note that determining the best overlay color has to be done by a certified Irlen Screener or Diagnostician. They can determine which overlay color, or combination of colors, is most suitable for an individual.

Founded by Helen Irlen in 1983, The Irlen Institute has played a significant role in helping more than a million people all over the world through its innovative technology and comprehensive diagnostic process. They want to emphasize that at The Irlen Institute, the health and the physical, emotional, and educational well-being of their clients is their foremost priority. With more than 170 Irlen® Diagnosticians and thousands of Irlen® Screeners, the institute is able to provide the Irlen Method to people in over 44 countries. The institute’s international headquarters can be found in Long Beach, CA, and provides clinical services and is home to the national and international laboratory that services all of the Institute’s European and North American affiliates.

Those who are interested in learning more about the colored overlays and the Irlen® Method can check out The Irlen Institute website or contact them on the phone or through email.


For more information about The Irlen Institute, contact the company here:

The Irlen Institute
Sanra Tosta
5380 E. Village Road
Long Beach, CA 90808