Dyslexia’s definition according to the National Institute of Health is that dyslexia is a learning disability which causes a child to have problems in their ability to read, write and spell according to their intellectual abilities. It is one of the most common learning disorders that affects children today and it stays with someone their whole life. Dyslexia can range from mild to severe. Treatment for dyslexia can be very successful if found and treated early in the child’s life.

Children who have dyslexia have problems with reading, writing and spelling due to the fact that their brain cannot translate information properly. The brain is unable to properly translate the images that it either sees or hears into something that is understandable for the child. However, children who have dyslexia have average intelligence. Mental retardation or brain damage are not related to this problem.

Dyslexia may or may not be apparent in the early school years. There are some things to watch out for. Children may have a hard time reading. Other signs and symptoms to watch for in children who may be dyslexic are problems with self esteem or symptoms of depression. Behavioral issues may crop up both at school and at home. The child may become very frustrated with school and develop an instant dislike for going to school and all things associated with it. If a child starts exhibiting these types of behavior they need to be evaluated for dyslexia or other types of learning disabilities.

There are three types of dyslexia. The first type of dyslexia is trauma induced dyslexia. This is dyslexia which is due to head trauma or brain injury in the area of the brain that controls how to read and write. This type of dyslexia is not commonly seen today.

The second type of dyslexia is called primary dyslexia. Primary dyslexia is an inherited disorder and is passed down from one generation to the next. This condition is much more common in boys than it is girls. Children with this type of dyslexia are rarely able to read above a fourth grade level and will have difficulty even as an adult with reading and writing.

The third type of dyslexia is developmental dyslexia. It is caused by abnormal hormone development in the early stages of pregnancy and fetal growth. This type of dyslexia will get better as the child ages. It is also more commonly seen in boys than it is girls.

Dyslexia can either be visual or auditory. Visual dyslexia is usually seen in children who typically reverse numbers or letters when they write. It is not uncommon to see children reverse letters and numbers up to the age of 7 or 8. After that, children should be able to distinguish the numbers and letters correctly. Seeing a child reverse their numbers and letters is one of the most common warning signs of dyslexia. Other signs of visual dyslexia include the inability to copy written text from a book or from a blackboard.

Auditory dyslexia includes the inability to distinguish the sounds of letters or groups of letters. Children who have auditory dyslexia may have trouble remembering and understanding what they hear. Their words may be spoken incorrectly and come out sounding different or funny. They may have trouble following tasks if more than one command is given at a time. They may know what they want to say but have problems articulating that into speech.

Other problems that may be seen with children with dyslexia is that they may not have established a preference of a dominant hand to write with. They may have a lot of trouble distinguishing which is left and which is right. They can also have problems with moving or staying within the rhythm of music.

Children who are dyslexic may show subtle signs of problems before problems with learning are noted. They can become withdrawn, or unfocused. These children will withdraw from other children and lose interest quickly in assignments or activities at school. These emotional symptoms need to be addressed as quickly as the educational issues are. Any child who is suspected of having dyslexia or is exhibiting emotional symptoms above should be evaluated by a psychologist to see if there is a learning disability causing these problems.

Last updated on Aug 18th, 2009 and filed under Neurological Disorders. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

2 Responses for “Dyslexia”

  1. There is a fourth type of dyslexia that is “induced” by misproscribed glasses or from trying to comprehend the wide vision field typical of a computer monitor while wearing progressive glasses that allow only a narrow field of undistorted vision.

  2. Kathleen Fumicello says:

    I am an O-G tutor and currently doing some research. I do not understand the difference between the definition of dyslexia vs. developmental dyslexia. Are there unique differences, or are they one and the same? Why do some schools diagnose “developmental dyslexia” and other schools just dyslexia?

    Thanks to anyone who can deepen my understanding of these definitions

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