Dyslexia

Dyslexia is a neurological learning disability that causes difficulties processing language. it occurs in children and adults with normal vision and intelligence.  

Dyslexia is found in 1 in every 5 people. It’s a lifelong condition that has no cure. However, most children with dyslexia can succeed in school with tutoring and specialized education programs. Psychological support also plays an important role.

Children with dyslexia are often mislabeled as ‘lazy’ or ‘stupid’ because of their lack of performance in school and in life. This is a misconception, since many people with dyslexia have an above average IQ.

To put it simply, in the brain of a person with dyslexia, there is  glitch in the ‘word analyzer’ and its connection with other parts of the brain.  

Dyslexia is caused by a problem in the brain’s ability to translate images received from the eyes into an understandable thought. It takes a person with dyslexia more time to figure out word meanings.

So, let’s try to imagine the world from a dyslexic person’s point of view. A person with dyslexia has trouble interpretting letters or words in the correct order, shape, and direction.

Here what a dyslexic person may experience:

The letters and numbers may appear reversed, mirrored, upside down, or sideways. So, s/he might confuse the letters (q and p) & (d and b), or (n,m,v,w) and the numbers (10 & 01). The word “dill” could appear as “llib.” Also the numbers (2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, & 9) could be confusing to read and write.

While distinctive numbers (0,8) are easy because they look the same on both sides, also lower case letters (i, o) and uppercase (H, I, O, X) are typical in shape and therefore not as likely to be confusing

People with dyslexia might also see the letters correctly, but would be unable to sound out words; that is, unable to connect the letters to the sounds they make and understand them

Other people with dyslexia might be able to connect the letters and sound out words, but are unable to recognize words they have seen before, so that they find themselves coming back to read the same passage over and over again, in attempt to understand what they are reading.

some might process the letters and words as if they are all crammed together

Some might be processing the words as if they appear completely backwards, such as the word “bird” looking like “brid”, or “God” looking to them like “dog”

Another group may be seeing the letters and words like normal, but getting a severe headache or feeling sick to their stomach every time they try to read for prolonged periods

There are different types of dyslexia: ‘dysphonetic’, ‘dyseidetic’ and ‘dysphoneidetic’.

In Dysphonetic dyslexia, also know as “auditory dyslexia”: the person has difficulty connecting sounds to symbols, and might have difficulties sounding out words; spelling mistakes would show a very poor grasp of phonics.

The ‘dyseidetic’ person on the other hand has great difficulty with whole word recognition and spelling. This type of dyslexia is also called “visual dyslexia.”

There is also the “mixed dyslexia” or “dysphoneidetic dyslexia”. This is the most severe form of dyslexia because it involves both types of coding functions: the child can’t read (decode) and spell (encode) words either eidetically or phonetically

Dyslexia can also make mathematics, especially the algebraic forms, an especially difficult challenge. This type of dyslexia is known as “dyscalculia”, which is defined as the inability to calculate equations due to poor mental math and memory skills. Signs of dyscalculia in adulthood would include: Poor mental math, difficulty handling money, making change

Failing to notice math signs and symbols (+ = – x )

Doesn’t remember the basic math operations like addition and multiplication tables

Poor sense of direction, trouble reading maps, telling time, understanding schedules

Mistakes in working with numbers – reversals, substituting other numbers and leaving numbers out

Trouble learning musical concepts or following directions in sports.

So how is dyslexia diagnosed?

The Dyslexia Determination Test (DDT)  

Avoid confusing dyslexia with intellectual disabilities, developmental disorders or autism.  It is common however that dyslexia would be assciated with other disorders like ADHD.

I wish you great health!

Alyaa Gad