Dyslexia Awareness Week 2023: Signs, Symptoms and Solutions

Dyslexia Awareness

Dyslexia Awareness Week takes place during October (2-8th). So now is an opportune moment to highlight this condition. And make people more aware of the symptoms and solutions to what can be a debilitating condition to live with.

Dyslexia comes in many different guises. Commonly associated with having difficulties with reading and writing skills, you may have heard of people complaining about letters and words ‘jumping’ around on the page. The British Dyslexia Association describes the condition in the following way:

‘Dyslexia is a learning difficulty which primarily affects reading and writing skills. However, it does not only affect these skills. Dyslexia is about information processing. Dyslexic people may have difficulty processing and remembering information they see and hear, which can affect learning and the acquisition of literacy skills. Dyslexia can also impact on other areas such as organisational skills.

Dyslexia in adults

Some of the signs of dyslexia in adults:

  • They confuse similar words.
  • Spelling can be erratic.
  • They have difficulty skim-reading text.
  • They often need to reread the text.
  • Reading and writing can be slower than expected.
  • People with dyslexia can find it hard to concentrate.
  • They get distracted easily from the task at hand.

Dyslexia Awareness

There are many ways we can support and help people living with dyslexia. Everyone is different, and we all learn in different ways. So, it’s vital to have an all-inclusive approach to learning to include everyone. Fortunately, there are many visual support resources to help dyslexic people.

One thing that can help people with dyslexia is coloured overlays and colourimetry. Overlays are pieces of translucent sheets of plastic in different colours. When overlaid on text, they can alleviate visual distortion. This process isn’t scientifically proven, but people have reported it helps with their symptoms. Colour perception in people can be measured using an instrument called a colourimeter. This instrument shows the patient different colours and saturation levels under a controlled environment. The examination usually takes place in conjunction with a comprehensive eye examination.

Although dyslexia can be a challenge to live with, we are all individuals with different strengths and weaknesses. Many dyslexic people are very visual and excel in the creative arts. Richard Branson, Keira Knightley, Steven Spielberg, and Tom Cruise all live with dyslexia. Having the condition hasn’t stopped them from excelling in their fields. Even Albert Einstein – who had an estimated IQ of 160 – was said to be dyslexic.

A few facts about dyslexia

  • According to the British Dyslexia Association, it’s estimated that around 10 percent of the UK population are dyslexic. And of that 10 percent, 4 percent suffer severely.
  • People who are dyslexic tend to be very creative and have a high level of intelligence.
  • If one parent has dyslexia, their child has a 50 percent chance of being dyslexic too. That climbs to 100 percent if both parents are dyslexic.
  • Dyslexia is a language-based learning difficulty. And it is the most common of all learning disabilities.
  • A Scottish ophthalmologist called James Hinshelwood was one of the first physicians to describe the clinical picture of developmental dyslexia. He named the condition congenital word-blindness.
  • The symptoms of dyslexia are varied, but include reading with poor comprehension, reading very slowly and hesitantly, and letter reversals such as confusing b and d.
  • There are two main types of dyslexia: reading difficulties related to visual-processing weaknesses and reading delays associated with auditory-processing difficulties.

Dyslexia Awareness

Dyslexia in children

Some signs of dyslexia in young children include displaying symptoms of reversing sounds in words or confusing similar words. They tend to be later to talk than the average milestones and have issues with learning nursery rhymes or remembering letters and numbers.

Did you know that the symptoms of dyslexia are similar to those of vision problems? For example, you might notice that your child avoids reading and writing or exhibits reduced concentration during visual tasks. Other signs could be poor reading fluency or comprehension and excessive blinking while reading. These are signs that your child could be struggling with their vision and not be a symptom of dyslexia. If you are concerned that your child might have dyslexia, it is worth arranging a comprehensive eye examination to eliminate vision problems first.

Please do get in touch with us if you would like to arrange an appointment with our optometrist. We currently test on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays. Just call 01858 433 577 to arrange an eye examination for your child.

Further reading:

NanoVista Flexible Eyewear for Children

Eye Test for Children