Reading is supposed to be fun for kids. It’s a way to explore new places, imagine silly characters, and learn lessons in a fun and engaging way. But when your child struggles with reading, it may become an activity they dread. While there could be many reasons why your child is having difficulties, dyslexia may be one of them. It is one of the most common learning problems when it comes to children and reading.
Many people think of dyslexia as just reversing letters or writing things backward, but it is more than that. It is a problem with matching letters and sounds, decoding words, comprehending what is read, reading fluently, and more. It can also impact math, writing, and spelling. Some children have dyslexia along with ADHD, auditory processing disorders, visual processing disorders, dysgraphia, or other conditions.
Common Signs of Dyslexia
Just because your child has trouble with their reading does not necessarily mean that they have dyslexia. Signs can overlap with other issues. However, here are some signs to be alert for that may prompt you to have your child evaluated:
- Trouble matching letters with the correct sounds.
- Difficulty identifying rhyming words.
- Problems recognizing sight words.
- Struggles with removing or changing the beginning or middle sound of a word to make a new word.
- Frequently makes spelling errors or switches letters around.
- Trouble understanding information when read, but can comprehend it when listening.
- Reads below grade level.
- Skips small words while reading.
Scientists don’t know the exact causes of dyslexia, but they believe that genetics and brain anatomy play a role. While there is no “cure” for the condition, there are strategies that children can use to manage the challenges of dyslexia and be more successful.
First, it is important to have your child tested to see if they have dyslexia or if their trouble with reading is due to other issues. PediaPlex uses cognitive and language-based diagnostic tests as well as conversations with people involved in the child’s daily life. This helps to create a more well-rounded understanding of the child, the challenges they face, and the impact it has on their learning and function.
Once your child has been diagnosed with dyslexia, they can receive the appropriate support both in school and at home. In school, children often qualify for accommodations. They may receive help from a reading specialist or support staff, be allowed extra time during testing, have shortened or modified assignments, or have more instructions provided verbally. At home, there are strategies you can use for helping them to improve their comprehension, fluency, decoding, and other skills.
Coping with dyslexia can be challenging, but it doesn’t have to hold your child back or ruin their love of reading. There are many well-known people who have learned to manage the difficulties of dyslexia and gone on to become successful – Steven Spielberg, Anderson Cooper, and Octavia Spencer just to name a few.
If you’re concerned about your child’s reading abilities or growing frustrations with reading, schedule an appointment to have them evaluated at PediaPlex. Determining their areas of strengths and improvement can allow you to be more effective in getting them the help and support they need to thrive.
Don’t let your child’s reading struggles hold them back. Have them evaluated for dyslexia or other learning issues at PediaPlex.