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Signs and Symptoms of Dyslexia

A wide range of difficulties is associated with dyslexia and it would be unusual for a person with dyslexia to exhibit all of them. Symptoms vary from person to person without a common pattern and some of the difficulties may sometimes be observed in a person without dyslexia. It is a cluster of difficulties that might lead one to suspect dyslexia and these might include the following:

  • Slow reading progress
  • Erratic or poor spelling
  • Reversals of letters, words or figures (eg d for b, saw for was, 6 for 9)
  • Difficulty remembering a long message or carrying out more than one instruction at a time
  • Poor development of spoken language and mispronunciations
  • Difficulty keeping up with dictation or copying from the board
  • Confusion of small words (eg a, the, of, for, and, but)
  • Difficulty understanding what s/he has just read
  • Visual aberrations such as words appearing to squash together or to move about
  • Untidy or unintelligible handwriting
  • Very slow handwriting with poor pencil grip
  • Difficulty with tying shoe laces, buttoning clothes
  • Confusion of left and right
  • Poor concentration span for reading and spelling
  • Unusually clumsy
  • Word-finding difficulties
  • Difficulty understanding time and tense
  • Difficulty learning sequences (eg alphabet, months of the year, days of the week, times tables, own address or birthdate)
  • Able to read a word, then fail to read it further down the page. Spell a word in different ways within the same piece of work
  • Poor organisational skills – timetabling, timekeeping, remembering necessary equipment
  • Lack of confidence, poor self-esteem