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Dyslexia& Visual Stress

Dyslexia is a condition that almost all people have heard of and affects around 5-10% of the population of the UK. This figure may be a low estimate as some people do not talk about their problems or seek appropriate help, and in some cases may not even realise they are having issues.

For example, if it has always made your eyes sore when you read you may think this is normal, but to some patients with dyslexia and visual stress this is the only symptom that causes them problems.

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Dyslexia and visual stress are not the same thing

Visual stress is a common co-occurring condition with dyslexia and can often be a reason why people with dyslexia experience difficulty in school and with reading, writing and numbers.

Dyslexia is a common learning difficulty that can cause problems with reading, writing and spelling. It is a specific learning difficulty which means it causes problems with certain abilities used for learning such as reading, writing or spelling, but unlike a learning disability intelligence is not affected. This is a common cause of frustration for people with dyslexia because they know what they want to write and therefore becoming frustrated making simple errors that they have little control over.

While dyslexia is a specific learning difficulty that makes learning more difficult on its own, it is often accompanied by other conditions which mean there are added difficulties, and that there are other reasons why learning is harder, not just dyslexia. At the specsplace we specialise in controlling the signs and symptoms of visual stress so that difficulties with learning can be minimised leading to better vision and less frustration.

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Signs and symptoms of visual stress

  • Words, letters or numbers appearing to jump and move around the page when reading
  • Words, letters, numbers, lines or paragraphs being frequently skipped, reversed or missed when reading
  • Words, letters or numbers being written incorrectly, including being in the wrong order, copied incorrectly with letters added or missed, or words being reversed when writing
  • Headaches or blurred vision when reading or writing
  • Words, letters, numbers, lines or paragraphs appearing too close together when reading
  • The target (usually a page of the book or the board in school) seeming too bright and causing discomfort to look at

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What we do

At the specsplace we aim to ensure that the eyes themselves are not the cause of the visual stress (and in very rare cases a misdiagnosis of dyslexia). In order to do this, we firstly perform an extensive check of the eyes with an emphasis on eye muscle testing as it is the eye muscles that can fatigue with visual stress causing the symptoms. If there are any issues found with the eyes that can be corrected with either spectacles, eye muscle exercises or in rare cases referral to the hospital then the appropriate action is taken and reviewed at the appropriate time.

After being given the appropriate time, exercises or both and symptoms have persisted, or if nothing is found at the initial check then we use the colorimeter to check if the symptoms of visual stress can be controlled by the use of precision tinted lenses. We use the colorimeter in an unbiased method to establish which colour gives the greatest reduction in the symptoms, and then re-test with this colour to ensure that an improvement in reading performance is obtained before issuing the precision tinted lenses.

When you have been struggling through no fault of your own it can be a massive relief to have a pair of spectacles that allows you to work as normal and realise your full potential.

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Book an appointment

If you wish to book an appointment with one of our opticians in Stoke on Trent, Staffordshire then please call us via the number below.

01782 330803

If you require any information about any of our services or products please use this contact form.

I have been a patient at the specsplace, formerly Newbold Opticians, like many other satisfied customers, for well over thirty years and during all that time the care and support I have received has always been exemplary.

The recent transition of ownership has been seamless and the same excellent and high quality of care has most definitely been maintained.

This care begins with the professional but extremely friendly welcome you receive when walking into the practice, from the highly trained staff on reception.

I would whole heartedly, thoroughly and unreservedly recommend this practice to anyone and am eternally grateful I was initially introduced to this practice and for the care I constantly receive.

Mrs Holmes

Find Us

The specsplace
46a Market Street