Dyslexia – not just a reading problem

 

 

Dyslexia is not just a severe reading disorder characterized by reversals. It is a syndrome, meaning that it shows many and varied reading and non-reading symptoms such as:

READING

* Memory instability for letters, words, numbers

* A tendency to skip over or scramble letters, words, and sentences
* A poor, slow reading ability prone to compensatory head
tilting, finger pointing and rapid fatigue
* Reversals of letters such as b and d, words such as saw and was, and
numbers such as 6 and 9 or 16 and 61* Letter and word blurring, doubling, movement, scrambling, omission,
insertion, size change , etc.
* Poor concentration, distractibility, light sensitivity (photophobia), delayed visual and phonetic processing, etc.

WRITING

* Messy, poorly angulated, or drifting handwriting prone to size,
spacing, and letter-sequencing errors.

SPELLING, MATH, MEMORY, AND GRAMMAR

* Difficulties remembering spelling, grammar, math, names, dates, and
lists , or sequences such as the alphabet, the days of the week and
months of the year, and directions.

SPEECH

* Speech disorders such as slurring, stuttering, minor articulation
errors, poor word recall, and auditory-input and motor-output speech
lags.

DIRECTION

* Right/left and related directional uncertainty.

TIME

* Delay in learning to tell time.

CONCENTRATION AND ACTIVITY

* Impaired concentration, distractibility, hyperactivity, or
overactivity

BEHAVIOR, TEMPER, OR IMPULSE DISTUBANCES

BALANCE AND COORDINATION

* Difficulties with balance and coordination functions, i.e. walking,
running, skipping, hopping, tying shoelaces, and buttoning buttons.

OTHER RELATED ISSUES

* Difficulties with headaches, nausea, dizziness, vomiting, motion
sickness, abdominal complaints, excessive sweating, and bed-wetting
* Feeling stupid, ugly, incompetent, brainless.
* Fears of the dark, heights, getting lost, going to school
* Fear or the avoidance of various balance, coordination, sports, and
motion-related activities.
* Mood disturbances.
* Obsessions and compulsions.

Because dyslexia is often mistakenly viewed as a severe reading
impairment rather than a syndrome of the above mentioned symptoms,
many believe that normal or even superior reading individuals can’t be
dyslexics – despite the presence of typical dyslexic – related
difficulties with writing, grammar, spelling, math, memory, speech,
sense of direction, and time, etc.

As a result, typical dyslexics with normal or superior reading scores
are termed Learning Disabled – as if dyslexia and LD were separate and
distinct disorders.

Several approaches, supported by research, believe dyslexia to be a
syndrome of many and varied symptoms differing in intensity. And thus
some dyslexics will have severe reading, spelling and speech
difficulties while others will have major problems with only math,
memory and concentration.

 

What many don’t realise is that many of the symptoms understood to be part of this syndrome are linked to irregular functioning of the vestibular system (better known as the inner-ear).   Not all Dyslexics are alike but many can be helped by activities aimed at improving vestibular functioning.  This means that particular, coordinated, slow movements can help many children who are struggling at school.

There will be more information about this in following posts.

 

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