Roughly 17 percent of the U.S. population has dyslexia, a common learning disorder that makes reading difficult. The source of the problem is their brain. A dyslexic person’s brain organizes and processes information differently. It has a harder time “decoding” how sounds and letters go together. The words suddenly change and the person doesn’t understand them.
Many children with dyslexia struggle in school in learning a written language, resulting in their avoidance of reading. It also may lead to anxiety, low self-confidence, depression and even anger. In many cases, schools are ill-equipped to handle students who have dyslexia.
Bilingual children face additional challenges
Dyslexia and other learning disabilities pose additional challenges for bilingual children. Language-related delays often are erroneously attributed to the consequences of bilingualism. The result is that some local school districts attempt to treat learning difficulties in bilingual children by providing them only with English as a Second Language (ESL) support. This is one reason why bilingual children’s developmental disabilities are unnoticed for long stretches.
Dyslexia likely runs in the family. If your father or mother have this learning disability, you may have it, too. There are many misconceptions surrounding dyslexia. It’s a myth that children and adults with this learning disability are of below average intelligence. And society once considered that dyslexia was more common in boys than girls. Recent research has disclosed that an equal number of boys and girls are dyslexic.
Common symptoms of dyslexia
Although there is no cure for dyslexia, early detection and intervention can result in improved outcomes. Parents should be alert to any potential learning disabilities among their pre- and school-age children. Here are some signs that your child may have dyslexia:
- Trouble rhyming
- Difficulty recognizing letters
- Poor at spelling
- A reluctance to read
- Slow at learning the sounds of letters and letter combinations
- Doesn’t recognize letters right away
- Spending long periods of time completing homework involving reading and writing
- Writing less than other children
Dyslexia is a common learning disorder. A child who has dyslexia often is a bright kid, but simply has difficulty reading. Boosting a child’s confidence is important. This is why it is so critical for parents to enroll a dyslexic child in a school program with teachers who have the patience, dedication and knowledge necessary to work with them.