Overview | Types | Causes | Symptoms | Risks Factors | Complications| Diagnosis | Treatment, And Management |
Well, if you don’t know about dyslexia, then you are at the right place. Here is all you need to know about dyslexia.
What is dyslexia?
Dyslexia is the most common learning disability that a child can have. It persists throughout life but can be managed in case of early diagnosis. The severity can be mild to severe. It not only makes a child weak in learning skills but can also become the reason for frustration and depression among children. It can be hereditary but not always.
The International Dyslexia Association defines dyslexia as:
‘Dyslexia is a specific learning disability that is neurological in origin. It is characterized by difficulties with accurate and/or fluent word recognition and by poor spelling and decoding abilities. These difficulties result from a deficit in the phonological component of language that is often unexpected about other cognitive abilities and the provision of other classroom instructions. Secondary consequences may include problems in reading comprehension and reduced reading experience that can impede the growth of vocabulary and background knowledge.’
Due to dyslexia, a child may develop:
- Low self–esteem
- Behavioral problems
- Unenthusiastic to go to school and learn new things
However, one must know that dyslexia is not a vision or hearing loss, mental retardation, brain damage, etc. It’s just a disability to process phonemes (smallest unit of speech).
Types of dyslexia:
Before we jump onto types of dyslexia, one should know that there are no types of dyslexia officially. And it can be possible that two people have some type of dyslexia but different symptoms. Hence, the types of dyslexia are —
- Phonological dyslexia – As its name suggests, this type of dyslexia includes problems with phonemes and pronunciation. In this, a person involves difficulty in breaking down words into smaller units, which makes it hard for an individual to match sound with their written form. About 75 % of people having dyslexia experience this difficulty. For example, ‘I’ sound from women, ‘sh’ sound from the nation, etc.
- Primary dyslexia: This is the most common type of dyslexia, caused due to dysfunctions of the left-sided brain (cerebral cortex). It can’t be improved with time. It is mostly hereditary or caused due to genetic mutation. Boys are more likely to get this than girls, especially if they are left-handed. In this, the person suffers from processing sounds, letters, and numbers.
- Secondary dyslexia: Some babies experience brain development issues in the womb which can cause neurological impairment and results in secondary dyslexia. However, secondary dyslexia responds best to the treatment but is developmental also. Developmental means it starts with the birth of an individual and lasts lifelong.
- Trauma dyslexia: When an adult has a brain injury from trauma or disease, which leads to difficulty in learning, language processing, etc. Then it is considered trauma dyslexia, also called acquired dyslexia.
- Visual dyslexia: This affects one’s visual processing. That means when the brain doesn’t receive a full picture of what the eyes are seeing, this visual dyslexia develops. It creates complications in learning to form letters and remembering the spellings.
- Surface dyslexia: People with surface dyslexia take a long to process language and have trouble seeing the whole word. Due to this, they develop problems in reading comprehension and takes too long to read.
Some less known types are –
- Perceptual dyslexia
- Linguistic dyslexia
- Math dyslexia
- Auditory dyslexia
- Spatial dyslexia etc.
Causes of dyslexia:
The prominent cause behind dyslexia is a disability to process phonemes. Different types of have different causes. Like primary dyslexia develops due to mutated genes, and the cause of secondary dyslexia is already discussed earlier.
Sometimes, brain injury or stroke can also lead to dyslexia.
And in some cases, the causes are still unknown.
Symptoms of dyslexia:
- Slow development, (learn to crawl, walk, etc. Later in comparison to others)
- Difficulty incorrect pronunciation
- Difficulty in speaking
- Difficulty in writing accurately
- Processing different sounds
- Coordination problems
- Prone to autoimmune disorders, such as seasonal allergies, asthma, etc.
- Problem recognizing the similar sounds and words
- Difficulty to copy from the board to the book
- Not able to remember the content
- Recalling more than one thing or command can be difficult
- The wrong or similar word may be used instead
- Difficulty in the expression of thoughts
- Feeling depressed
- They do different mischief to draw attention away from their academics etc.
- Family History
- Other learning disability
- Low birth weight
- Differences in the parts of the brain which helps in reading
- Premature birth etc.
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- Trouble learning
- Behavioral problems
- Withdrawal from family and society
- Low self–esteem
- Consequences in career development
- Attention – deficit hyperactivity disorder, etc.
Dyslexia is a difficult disability to diagnose. In this, tests to check the child’s reading, listening, intelligence, etc. abilities are tested. Further, it involves noticing what a child takes the given information and how easily he/she could process it. The tests also try to evaluate that the child’s reaction is better in which type of communication, such as he/she is good to process the given information verbally, visually or tactic – kinesthetic.
Some tests that can be done to diagnose are—
- Motor free visual perception test
- VADS, TAPS, TADS.
- Test for auditory comprehension of language
- Berry developmental test of visual-motor integration
- Stanford – Binet intelligence test, etc.
Treatment and management of dyslexia:
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Although there is no permanent cure for dyslexia, with the help of some approaches we can at least make their life easy.
Since dyslexia is different in each individual. Even if two people having the same type of dyslexia, they may have different symptoms.
To treat dyslexia, the most important thing is early diagnosis. As early as it gets diagnosed, we can help them to get treatment according to their need which can give long-term benefits. Some of diagnosed to manage dyslexia are —
- An evaluation to know the exact need of your child
- Children with dyslexia may benefit from learning tools that tap into their senses, such as touch, vision, or hearing.
- Support to identify the needy areas and to cope it up with strategies
- Counseling can help the children to fight behavioral issues along with low self–esteem, anxiety, depression, etc.
- Teachers can help students with dyslexia by providing them some extra time to write and learn new things.
There are many ways to help people with dyslexia, all you need is some patience and intentions to help.