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Mon, 16 Sep 2019

Northeast Today

Dyslexia: The Learning Disorder

Dyslexia: The Learning Disorder
July 06
13:50 2019

Dr. Nilratan Majumder

Dyslexia is a specific learning disability in children and persists throughout life. It is characterized by difficulties with accurate and/or fluent word recognition and by poor spelling and decoding abilities. These difficulties typically result from a deficit in the phonological component of language that is often unexpected in relation to other cognitive abilities and the provision of effective classroom instruction. Secondary consequences may include problems in reading comprehension and reduced reading experience that can impede growth of vocabulary and background knowledge. Dyslexia is the most common learning disability and severity of dyslexia can vary from mild to severe. The sooner dyslexia is treated, the more favourable the outcome. However, it is never too late for people with dyslexia to learn to improve their language skills.

Dyslexia can go undetected in the early grades of schooling. Children can become frustrated by the difficulty in learning to read. It is important to note that other problems can disguise dyslexia such as a child may show signs of depression and low self-esteem and have behaviour problems at home, as well as at school that often manifest. They become unmotivated and develop a dislike for school, and their success may be jeopardized if the problem remains untreated.

The cause of dyslexia is believed to involve both genetic and environmental factors. Some cases run in families. It often occurs in people with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and is associated with similar difficulties with numbers. It may begin in adulthood as the result of a traumatic brain injury, stroke, or dementia. The underlying mechanisms are problems within the brain’s language processing. Dyslexia is separate from reading difficulties caused by insufficient teaching or either hearing or vision problems.

 

dyslexia

 

The different types of dyslexia are

  • Primary dyslexia: This is the most common type of dyslexia, and is a dysfunction of, rather than damage to, the left side of the brain (cerebral cortex) and does not change with age.
  • Secondary or developmental dyslexia: This type of dyslexia is caused by problems with brain development during the early stages of fetal development. Developmental dyslexia diminishes as the child matures. It is also more common in boys.
  • Trauma dyslexia: This type of dyslexia usually occurs after some form of brain trauma or injury to the area of the brain that controls reading and writing. It is rarely seen in today’s school-age population.

Other types of learning disability include:

  • Visual dyslexia is sometimes used to refer to visual processing disorder, a condition in which the brain does not properly interpret visual signals.
  • Auditory dyslexia refer to auditory processing disorder. Similar to visual processing disorder, there are problems with the brain’s processing of sounds and speech.
  • Dysgraphia refers to the child’s difficulty holding and controlling a pencil so that the correct markings can be made on the paper.
  • Dyscalculia refers to child’s inability to do mathematical calculations despite normal IQ.
  • Reads slowly and painfully
  • Experiences decoding errors, especially with the order of letters
  • Shows wide disparity between listening comprehension and reading comprehension
  • Has trouble with spelling
  • May have difficulty with handwriting
  • Exhibits difficulty recalling known words
  • Has difficulty with written language
  • May experience difficulty with math computations

Signs and Symptoms

Diagnosis

Dyslexia is diagnosed through a series of tests of memory, spelling, vision, and reading skills.

Management

  • Provide a quiet area for activities like reading, answering comprehension questions
  • Use books on tape
  • Use books with large print and big spaces between lines
  • Provide a copy of lecture notes
  • Don’t count spelling on history, science or other similar tests
  • Allow alternative forms for book reports
  • Allow the use of a laptop or other computer for in-class essays
  • Use multi-sensory teaching methods
  • Teach students to use logic rather than rote memory

 

Carry Home Message

  • Dyslexia is difficulty in learning to read.
  • Dyslexia can be related to hereditary factors or other factors that affect brain development.
  • Diagnosis of dyslexia involves reviewing the child’s processing of information from seeing, hearing, and participating in activities.
  • Treatment of dyslexia ideally involves planning between the parent(s) and the teachers.
  • Most children with dyslexia can succeed in school with tutoring or specialized education program.

 

 

 

nilratan   (The author is an M.D. in Paediatric. He has worked in West Bengal Health Service and Tripura Health Service for last 35 years. He received Shishu Bisheshagya Shiromoni Award by IAP East Zone in 2014. He has published four books in Bengali for awareness of common people about health.)

 

 

 

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