What is Irlen Syndrome?

What is Irlen Syndrome?


Irlen Syndrome is a perceptual processing disorder. This is different from problems involving sight or vision. When an individual suffers from Irlen Syndrome, their brain has difficulty processing certain wavelengths of light. In this way, light (especially bright and fluorescent lighting) becomes a stressor on the brain and causes the visual cortex of the brain to become overactive. It is this over-activity that creates a variety of visual, physical, cognitive, emotional, and neurological symptoms.

Irlen Syndrome is hereditary and tends to run in families. However, it can occur as a result of illness, medical procedures, or traumatic brain injury or concussion. Fortunately, it is very easy to treat Irlen Syndrome.

What is a perceptual processing disorder?

Visual processing problems can include difficulties with visual discrimination, visual memory, visual sequencing, and visual motor processing. In the case of Irlen Syndrome, a core light sensitivity is what leads to the visual processing problems the brain experiences.

Visual processing problems can sometimes overlap with learning difficulties and concentration problems, but are quite prevalent within the general population as well. While most often, a visual or perceptual processing disorder will be present from birth, visual processing problems can also be the result of head injury.

Possible Distortions

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