What is Dyslexia – FAQ

What is Dyslexia?

Dyslexia is a language-based learning disability. Dyslexia refers to a cluster of symptoms. It results in people having difficulties with specific language skills, particularly reading. People can have mild, moderate or severe dyslexia. Difficulties might be experienced in other areas of learning like; spelling, writing or maths. Dyslexia is referred to as a learning disability, because it can make it very difficult for a student to succeed academically in the typical educational environment. The word dyslexia comes from the German dys- ‘difficult’ and the Greek lexis ‘speech’.


Other Dyslexia FAQ’s

Is There A Cure For Dyslexia?
No, dyslexia is not a disease or a medical issue. There is no ‘cure’, but there are ways of teaching that can complement a dyslexics learning style.

What is dyslexia – The Causes?
The exact causes of dyslexia are still not completely clear. Brain imagery studies do show differences in the way the brain of a dyslexic person develops, functions and processes information. Dyslexia is not due to either a lack of intelligence, or a lack of desire to learn. With appropriate teaching methods dyslexics can learn successfully.

Do all dyslexics see print upside down, or reverse letters and words?
No. This is a myth. Some dyslexics do reverse some letters and words. Others many don’t.

What is dyslexia like for a person reading?
There is no single pattern of difficulty that affects all dyslexic people.

A dyslexic person might, see…
– some letters as backwards or upside down.
– text appearing to jump around on a page.
– letters jumbled up and out of order.
– letters and words all bunched together.
– the letters of some words appearing completely backwards, such as the word “was” looking like “saw”.

A dyslexic person might, feel…
– a severe headache every time they try to read.
– sick to the stomach every time they try to read.

A dyslexic person might, not be able to…
– tell the difference between letters that look similar in shape, such as…’o’…’e’…’c’.
– tell the difference between letters with similar shape but different orientation, such as…’b’…’p’…’d’…’q’.
– make sense of or remember what they read, so they find themselves coming back to read the same passage over and over again.

It is important to understand when a dyslexic person sees letters or words reversed or mixed up, there may not be anything wrong with their eyes. The problem is in the way the mind interprets what the eyes see.

What is dyslexia coloured overlays? I have heard that this can help dyslexic children. How does this work?
Around 30% of people with dyslexia suffer with a visual stress known as Scotopic sensitivity. (or Irlen Syndrome). This is where text appears to move around or look distorted in some way. Coloured filters can help to make the text visually clearer and more comfortable to see. However, they will not teach a child to read.

I think my child may be dyslexic… but the school doesn’t seem to be interested.
Sadly, dyslexia is not recognised in Australia. Educationalists prefer to use other labels. There are some schools in the country able to offer support for dyslexic pupils. Though many still have yet to receive training in SLD, so signs of dyslexia are often missed or misinterpreted.

Do all students with reading difficulties have dyslexia?
No. Other causes of reading difficulties include:
– intellectual disability.
– hearing or vision problems.
– lack of appropriate teaching.
– emotional problems.

Why is only one of my children dyslexic?
Even though dyslexia runs in families, it doesn’t mean every member of the family will develop dyslexia. Some family members may develop varying areas and degrees of difficulty. Or maybe no area of difficulty, which then gives them a ‘gifted’ label.

What is dyslexia for an intellectually gifted person?
Intellectually gifted dyslexic students may be performing within the average range for their age, but be significantly underachieving when their intelligence is taken into consideration.

Does my child require an assessment before doing a course?
No. Some parents like to have an assessment done so they know if their child is dyslexic or not. All courses offered have multiple benefits even for the non-dyslexic child. These include self management techniques, something not taught at school. For an assessment click here and we will be in touch to schedule an appointment with one of our Educational Consultant or Psychologist who specialises in dyslexia assessments.

My child has been diagnosed with dyslexia. Should I tell them?
There is no right or wrong answer to this question. For many children and adults, having a name for their problem can lead to a sense of relief. It can be reassuring to learn from a professional you are not ‘dumb’ and there is a reason why you find reading and writing hard.

what is dyslexia


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Tom MullallyWhat is Dyslexia – FAQ