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Jun 11

What is Dyslexia?

What is Dyslexia?

What is Dyslexia? Does my child show the symptoms?

Affecting 3-7% of people in the world, dyslexia a variable and often familial learning disability involving difficulties in acquiring and processing language. This is typically manifested by a lack of proficiency in reading, spelling, and writing. Dyslexia is not an indication of low intelligence but rather it is a neurological issue concerning how the brain processes information. A diagnosis of dyslexia is typically made based on IQ assessments and standardized tests evaluating reading and learning. Often people incorrectly label any learning disability or academic struggle as dyslexia. Unfortunately this has led to the term dyslexia being used as a generic term for any struggle with learning or reading.

If dyslexia is a “brain problem” what is the correlation between vision and learning problems?

Dyslexia can be described as a situation in which a person is not achieving learning and academics to the ability they should be able to based on their IQ. Even more simply, they are not achieving the potential they should be able to achieve. Instead they have a processing problem interfering with their learning. How does our brain process the majority of our information? Through our vision!

Research tells us that our brains use vision as the primary sense in gathering information from the world around us. Up to 70% of our brain also relies on that same visual information to understand and process what it sees. This is visual processing. This isn’t about the eyeball itself, but rather about what the brains understanding of vision is. If the brain is not understanding the visual information it is receiving, or it isn’t using efficient visual skills to acquire the information then reading and learning are going to be more difficult. Often in this situation a child will perform much better if they hear the information rather than see it for themselves. A vision related learning problem manifests itself with many of the same symptoms as a learning disorder or dyslexia.

How does vision rehabilitation help with learning?

Vision rehabilitation is a focused, patient specific therapy plan to increase accuracy and efficiency of vision skills used in acquiring, processing, and storing the information. It’s brain training. Vision rehabilitation does not cure dyslexia but instead trains the brain to understand what a person sees and process that information efficiently and accurately. Imagine how much easier reading and learning would be with those abilities.

According to pediatrician and parent advocate for the National Center for Learning Disabilities, Dr. Debra Walhof:
“It is important to remember that normal sight may not necessarily be synonymous with normal vision…That being said, if there is a vision problem, it could be preventing the best tutoring and learning methods from working. Now that certainly doesn’t mean every dyslexic child needs vision therapy, however in my opinion, skills such as focusing, tracking and others are essential foundational tools for reading. In general, if your child has trouble with reading or learning to read, getting a vision evaluation to assess these skills from a qualified Developmental Optometrist would be a smart move.”

Dyslexia Treatment

There is not currently a cure for dyslexia, but with the right tools, hard work, and a supportive environment, dyslexic children can learn to read and become academically successful. At Omni Vision & Learning, we offer tutoring for children with dyslexia, as well as vision rehabilitation for those children who also have vision problems interfering with their learning. We are here to help unlock your child’s potential.

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