Coloured overlays have been shown to increase reading fluency in 20% of cases.
People with visual stress may experience one or several of the following:
- Blurred letters or words which go out of focus.
- Letters which move or present with back to front appearance or shimmering or shaking.
- Headaches from reading.
- Words or letters which break into two and appear as double.
- Find it easier to read large, widely spaced print, than small and crowded.
- Difficulty with tracking across the page.
- Upset by glare on the page or over-sensitive to bright lights.
In some cases any of these symptoms can significantly affect reading ability. It can also make reading very tiring. Of course a child will not necessarily recognise what they see as a problem, as this is how they always see text.
The use of cream or pastel coloured backgrounds can mitigate this difficulty as can coloured filters either as an overlay or as tinted reading glasses. People with reading difficulties sometimes have a weakness in eye co-ordination or focusing and a specialist practitioner might recommend treating this with eye exercises or glasses. If these problems are present, they should be detected and treated before coloured filters are prescribed.