General News

Paddy Considine battling rare sight disorder

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May 07, 2013 | 10:21am EDT

British actor Paddy Considine wears tinted contact lenses to filter out light after he was diagnosed with Irlen Syndrome. The Bourne Ultimatum star found out he had behavioural disorder Asperger syndrome in 2010 at the age of 36, but despite the diagnosis bringing some relief, Considine still struggled in social situations. His wife Shelley urged him to go to a psychologist, who suggested he also suffered from Irlen Syndrome, which stops victims from processing full spectral light, resulting in further behavioural issues. Explaining that he had dealt with the problem since his teens, Considine tells British magazine The New Review, "(It had been) driving me to the point of destruction... It was causing all this anger and aggravation of my brain. It was a nightmare. My brain was telling me to shut down as a result of it. From the minute I opened my eyes, light would hit my eyes and I'd already want to go back to sleep again." His friend and Hot Fuzz co-star Simon Pegg also reveals there was a dramatic change in Considine's personality once he started wearing the prescribed contact lenses while they worked on new film The World's End. Pegg adds, "We could all see Paddy was suffering a little bit (on set). He was having to deal with the condition and also focus on acting. It's like juggling 20 balls... Once they'd (lenses) arrived it was amazing - he just relaxed. There's an edginess to Paddy which is necessary for who he is, and it empowers him. It just took away the negative aspect of that edginess."

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