Irlen Syndrome / Visual Stress Clinic

Alan Penn - Irlen Specialist

Personally trained and mentored by Helen Irlen at the Irlen Institute in California to the highest level of Irlen Clinic Director.  I use proven Irlen Technology to assess and remediate with through spectral modification, adults and children who suffer from Irlen Syndrome (called by some Scotoptic Sensitivity Syndrome or Visual Stress).  

Sensory Modulation Disorder 

Irlen Syndrome should be considered a Sensory Modulation Disorder causing a variety of symptoms including visual processing deficits and light sensitivity.  This is a brain processing problem and not a vision problem.  Vision perception is a higher order processing of visual information and involves the brain’s ability to accurately understand and process visual information easily and efficiently without stress.

As one of the very few genuine Irlen professionals in England I take a supportive, personal and unhurried approach to each client as issues will be unique and correction will be very individual.

Most of my work is through regular peer referral having gained the reputation for delivering results with the highest levels of personal service, easily accommodating complex client needs.

How to Get Tested for Irlen?

Those who live in Central England or those who wish to travel to Derby are welcome to visit our new assessment facility. This is located at Marble Hall, a prestigious listed building formally the main offices for Rolls-Royce. Automated bookings can be made through this site.

For London and other areas, home visits are currently the preferred appointment of choice for greater convenience and flexibility; some clients prefer a workplace; school or university visit which is no problem.

The Irlen Method is a two stage process, usually carried out over two appointments and comprises: 

  • Stage 1 - Irlen Screening: determines whether or not colour can make a difference and whether the improvement will be slight, moderate, or significant. In addition, you find out all the areas that can improve with the Irlen Spectral Filters. Only individuals for whom colour will make a moderate to significant difference are referred onto the second stage (so, you don't waste time or money).

    The Irlen Screening involves a set of tasks that are designed to elicit the full area of physical symptoms and distortions so that Irlen can address ALL of your symptoms not just some. This provides the maximum possible benefit. You will be educated about your symptoms (as most people have no idea what they have been experiencing all their lives is actually not normal). This knowledge is critical to be able to provide changes in all the areas, not just reading, which are affected by visual processing. In the final portion of the screening, the Irlen Screener can identify what coloured overlay or combination of overlays works to greatly reduce or eliminate all of your symptoms and allow you to read easier for longer with better comfort.

  • Stage 2 - Irlen Filter evaluation: usually 2 to 3 hours in length. During this appointment, the Irlen Diagnostician has a variety of tasks that they go through to help determine your individualized lens colour which will calm the brain allowing for accurate and comfortable ability to function inside, outside, reading, driving, and a variety of other activities. Irlen does not just address reading. Irlen Spectral Filters eliminate sensitivity to light, especially florescent light, sunlight, headlights, improves depth perception, providing maximum benefit for reading, copying, maths and other academic tasks. The Diagnostician uses a set of diagnostic tasks that are systematically cycled through and used in combination with client feedback, as well as non-verbal behavior and task performance to fine-tune and determine the optimal colour for an individual.

    This precise tint will be individually added to your lens (with or without standard optical correction) by the lab in California.

Please contact us for any Irlen Syndrome advice, current fees or to book a screening and filter appointment.

For additional Irlen information visit:

Irlen Method
Who and How does it help?

Correcting Irlen using Irlen Coloured Overlays or Irlen Spectral Filters (these are not just coloured lenses) in spectacles or contact lenses help:

  • Reduce anxiety and stress

  • Increase confidence and self esteem

  • Give a greater sense of wellbeing

  • Restore normal sleep patterns

The increased fatigue effects of Irlen are often exaggerated by modern artificial lighting and increased VDU usage in classrooms or the workplace. Irlen problems can be life-long, changing from childhood into adulthood, and generally cause or co-exists with:

  • Literacy skills deficit
    - Dyslexia (many are misdiagnosed with as Dyslexic but actually have Irlen)
    - Reading speed, fluency, accuracy and comfort
    - Comprehension and spelling
    - Handwriting, especially copying from books or whiteboards

  • General learning problems
    - Maths, especially in the areas of tables, graphs and algebra.
    - Other text intensive subjects involving reading, comprehension and writing

  • ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder) or or AD/HD (Attention Deficit/ Hyperactivity Disorder)
    - Attention / Concentration / Behaviour Disorders

  • Specific Learning Disabilities
    - Aspergers Syndrome and Autism

  • Head and eye discomfort
    - Headaches - Migraines - Nausea - Co-ordination - Light Sensitivity

  • Body and mental health issues
    - M.E./Chronic Fatigue Syndrome - Fibromyalgia - Immune System Strength - Anxiety - Diet concerns

Videos About Irlen Syndrome

Copyright Alan Penn Limited
Irlen Trademark used with permission of Helen Irlen