Dyslexia Treatment

Any evidence-based treatment concerned with improvement of a learning disorder characterized by problems in processing words into meaningful information. This is most strongly reflected in difficulty in learning to read. This often takes the form of an individual education plan (IEP) that incorporates some time each day spent with a reading specialist. Children appear to do best in programs that emphasize phonics- breaking words into sounds, then combining the sounds into words. If the school does not use a phonics-based program, parents may wish to supplement school-based instruction with a private program such as Orton-Gillingham or Lindamood-Bell that emphasizes letter-sound awareness. A multisensory approach combining sight, sound, and touch, is helpful to some children. The underlying cause of dyslexia is not known, although research suggests the condition is often inherited. Using positron emission tomography (PET) scans and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), researchers have been able to track the parts of the brain that become active when people with and without dyslexia read. Their general conclusion is that the brains of people with dyslexia are organized differently than those without the disorder and that this different organization results in less concentrated and efficient analysis and processing of the written representation of letter sounds into meaningful information.

Common signs of dyslexia include problems with:

  • identifying single letters or words
  • breaking down words into their individual sounds(phonemes)
  • blending individual sounds into meaningful words at an appropriate speed
  • reading comprehension
  • chronically reading below grade level
  • accurate spelling
  • transposing letters in words
  • following complex directions
  • confusion with opposites (up/down, early/late, and so on)

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