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Success Stories

The Madsen Family Adventure with Irlen Syndrome


Sean (33 years), Abigail (9 years), Deklan (7 years)

Our family adventure with Irlen Syndrome started with our daughter, Abigail. At the end of first grade she was unable to sound out the simplest of words despite the specialized instruction of homeschooling and a reading tutor. Her Irlen screening revealed she had severe physical symptoms and a distortion she described as her “eyes making circles.” Fitted with Irlen Spectral Filters, Abigail is now a public school honor roll student, entering fourth grade as an excited chapter book reader.

During Abigail’s Irlen screening, her father, Sean, realized he also suffers from the syndrome. His entire life he had assumed everyone “saw words floating off the page.” After getting his Irlen Spectral Filters, Sean read a book for pleasure for the first time in over two decades.

Our son, Deklan, was tested at the start of first grade when he refused to read aloud, only staring at each page silently. Through the screening process, Deklan explained that the letters were “moving until they were all in a pile.” With Irlen Spectral Filters, Deklan met the reading goal required to attend that year’s Reading Celebration. 

Irlen Spectral Filters are a blessing for our entire family and we’re thankful for the opportunity to share our story.


Haven and Xander’s Irlen Story 


Haven (10 years) and Xander (8 years)

The impact that Irlen tinted glasses have had on my family’s life is immeasurable. Haven, our daughter, was failing 3rd grade. After ignoring the recommendations of her 1st and 2nd grade teachers, we realized we had no other choice but to accept it. All the hours spent struggling through homework just wasn’t providing results. Then her teacher gave us hope. She suggested having her screened for Irlen Syndrome. Haven had mentioned to her that her words were swimming and she remembered a student of hers that had the same issues and wore Irlen glasses.

We researched it and made an appointment. Our lives were forever changed, all because of a pair of tinted glasses. The next year Haven consistently made honor roll, but the impact went beyond academics. Our once shy and timid little girl had found her courage. She started cheerleading, drama and just overflowed with creative energy.

Xander, our son, was constantly unable to focus in the classroom. He had the will; his 1st grade teacher said she’d never had a student ask to stay in at lunch to catch up on work but he just couldn’t focus.  We got a notice that he may be held back. Our hearts sank. ADHD is what we heard, but after screening him for Irlen we discovered that he was extremely light sensitive. The fluorescent lighting in the class rooms was wreaking havoc. Two months after being fitted for his Irlen tinted glasses he was recommended, tested and accepted into the school’s Gifted and talented program.



David Artuso: The Incurables TV Series

The Incurables TV series tells the story of David Artuso. When it came to school, David just wasn’t getting it. His parents and teachers couldn’t seem to figure out the problem, especially when they found out he had a genius IQ. It wasn’t until David went to college that found out he suffered from Irlen Syndrome. David shares his story of childhood struggle and ultimate relief and success after being given Irlen Spectral Filters.



Kelsey’s Story: Struggling with Daily Headaches and Failing Grades

9-year-old Kelsey was getting C’s and D’s in school and suffered headaches every day. In this video, Kelsey and her dad talk about what it is like to have Irlen Syndrome, and show how her Irlen Spectral Filters have improved her reading and math computation.


Our Facebook Friends Write In

Submitted by Larissa O’Neill

My 8 1/2 year old daughter has been wearing her Irlen lenses for a couple of months now. They have made a drastic effect on so many areas of her life, as well as her schooling. The emotional balance has been an incredible difference, from a mum’s perspective. I have seen an incredible and drastic difference in her reading ability and have seen it first-hand. Without her glasses on and not realizing it, the lack of her ability to track lines, total lack of being able to read a word let alone a sentence. Then when telling her she forgot to put her glasses on, then being able to read aloud the whole page. I’m impressed and relieved. Our school has been fabulous in allowing the specialist recommendations to be put into play. So, now it’s my turn to get Irlen Lenses. After my whole life, having this struggle, having no idea that there are Irlen lenses, this has been a wonderful journey so far. Gratitude to Helen, she has changed lives.


Submitted by Rick Jen Rossiter Trezise

A couple years ago my eldest son who was 8 was wrongly diagnosed to be ADD/ADHD, I accepted it, so they said the best thing for him is to medicate him, not knowing much about the affects I agreed. Months down the track he began to have really bad side effects from the drug. It was like he had bad turret’s syndrome, so we withdrew him from the meds and decided to investigate. We went to two doctors, they just suggested we change his meds, but to expect the same sort of thing. That wasn’t good enough , we then took him to the children’s hospital, to my disgust they said the same thing, so we walked out and left it at that. A year down the track we had to take my middle child to the optometrist, they said you need to have him tested for Dyslexia. Again we did some research into it. A few weeks later we had both the boys tested for Dyslexia. I was surprised and really happy to finally get to the bottom of both of it all. Both the boys have now got tinted glasses and doing really well at school.


Submitted by Chris McGowan

I have always struggled in school. I returned to school got tested and now use an overlay. The pain went away and I am now able to read twice as fast and long. I will be getting my glasses back within a week. I went from a C/D student to an A/B student at 44 years old, and I fully enjoy school for the first time.


Submitted by Lauryn Jean Bertie

In 1996 I was 11 and got my first Irlen filters. I had a Reading Age of a 7 year old, but within the year because of My Irlen Filters I was in the normal range for reading. Thanks to my Irlen Filters I lead a normal life.


Submitted by Melissa Herald Newman

Thank you SO much… my first grade daughter was barely reading three words per minute in October and hated to read. She got her glasses in November and just a few short months later she hit her first grade reading goal of SEVENTY words per minute. Her reading improvement has been nothing short of remarkable and it’s all attributable to her Irlen lenses.