The screening for Irlen Syndrome involves challenging the visual system to determine the severity of symptoms. Then colour overlays are used to alter the contrast between the words and the page. Once the proper colour combination has been determined, overlays of that colour are placed over the page while reading. As a second step, tinted Irlen filters (lenses) are recommended for most people. Although the treatment is simple, the results are often very dramatic. The use of the colour filters will allow a person with Irlen Syndrome to see the words on the page clearly. The individual can then develop the skills necessary for efficient reading. Once the skills are in place, individuals can read for long periods without discomfort. Therefore, the affected individual can more effectively practice reading, one of the most important elements in learning how to read. This allows for quick and dramatic improvement of reading skills, and will enhance academic performance and self esteem.
For those individuals in whom Irlen syndrome is only one layer of their disability, the Irlen filters remove that layer of difficulty, making it easier to identify and remediate the other difficulties. For these individuals improvement in reading and other language skills will require intensive intervention and progress will be slower.