Make Reading Easier For Those With Dyslexia


I have a mild case of dyslexia, which, among other things, makes reading a little difficult, especially reading the small, crowded type in spreadsheets. Do you have a recommendation?

I have several. Most people with dyslexia or light-sensitive eyes find text on a white background—whether on a computer screen or paper—somewhat difficult to read. Adding a faint yellow tint to the page cuts down the reflected glare and makes focusing easier, whether or not you have eye problems.

In Word, add the tint by clicking on Format , Background and then the color marked by the arrow (see screenshot).

In Excel, first highlight the entire worksheet by pressing Ctrl+A, then click on the Fill Color (paint bucket) icon and then the light yellow panel (see screenshot).

For help reading printed material, buy an 8 1/2 -by-11 yellow-tinted transparent plastic sheet at an office supply store and lay it over what you’re reading to remove the glare.

Another problem is the type size. While you can’t do anything about printed material, you can adjust the computer’s font size quite easily. Although I generally use 12-point type, for ease in reading I enlarge my personal view (without changing the document’s format settings) by clicking on the Zoom icon (see screenshot).

If you don’t have that icon on your toolbar, click on Tools , Customize and under the Commands heading, grab the Zoom icon (see screenshot) and drag it onto the toolbar. Do the same for Excel.

Enlarging the spacing between lines of type helps, too. I find two-line spacing too much and one-line spacing too little, but hidden among Word’s little formatting adjustments is 1.5-line spacing, which I find just right. To access it, click on Format , then Paragraph and the Indents and Spacing tab. Under Line spacing , click on the down arrow to engage Multiple , and then dial the spacing to 1.5 (see screenshot).

For convenience, you can place the Line spacing icon in your toolbar (see screenshot).

However, that icon is well-hidden: Look under the Commands tab and under Format ; it’s the next-to-last icon in the lengthy list.



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