Dyslexia is a learning disorder. It occurs in children with normal intelligence. It makes it hard to read and spell. It is a lifetime condition. Most children that are affected with dyslexia can succeed with the help of a tutor.
What are the symptoms that parents should look for?
It is difficult to identify dyslexia before school age. Your child might show early signs before school as:
- Difficulty in rhyming
- Talking late
- Struggle to learn new words
At school age, the child will have difficulty in reading or even copying correctly the homework from the board. He will have trouble following more than one command at a time and would encounter difficulty seeing similarities and differences in letters and words. The child may not remember the content of his favorite story. Music and dance classes are an effort for him. He will find difficulty moving to the rhyme. As well, learning a foreign language is a distress.
What causes dyslexia?
There are two types of dyslexia:
- Primary dyslexia: It is an inherited condition. It runs in the families. It affects the left side of the brain and is a lifetime condition. It is usually found in boys more than girls.
- Trauma dyslexia: It occurs after a brain trauma or injury that affects the brain.
How is dyslexia diagnosed?
Dyslexia is a difficult disorder to diagnose. It is not easy for classroom teachers to diagnose dyslexia. It is important to consult a doctor or a psychologist. Several tests will be done to determine the child’s reading level and evaluate the condition. The tests will assess how the child takes the information and process them. Usually, tests are done in a game type or puzzle format to ease the child and let him feel more comfortable.
These tests will define whether the child learns better by hearing the words, by using his visual memory or by creating something with his hands. .They also help determine whether another disorder may be causing or adding to the child's poor reading ability.
How to treat dyslexia?
There are no drugs for dyslexia. It is treated by coaching and education. The health care personnel will use different techniques involving all sensory systems; vision, hearing and touch to improve reading skills. The orthophonist will help your child recognize the sounds of the words, read aloud, build his vocabulary and comprehend what he is reading.
Around 95% of children respond to educational interventions. Even if these children will face day to day issues, they can succeed in their life. Dyslexic child is not a dumb child. He might be bright and gifted in some subjects as mathematics or arts. They can have a successful career.
How to support your child?
- Always support your child. Show him love and always encourage him.
- Address the problem early. Once you suspect that your child might have dyslexia, contact your doctor. Children who are supported during kindergarten improve their reading skills and will succeed in elementary and high school.
- Read loudly to your child and slowly. Articulate well the letters so he can differentiate the sounds.
- Work with your child’s teachers. Stay in contact with them and discuss the possibility of creating a study plan for your child.
- If needed, get a reading specialist to help you.
Talk to your child about dyslexia. Explain that this is not a failure from him. The better he understands his condition the better he will accept it and would be able to encounter any future issue.