What is Dyslexia?
Dyslexia (also called Developmental Dyslexia) is a developmental condition that specifically affects literacy (reading, writing and spelling). People who have Dyslexia have poor literacy after taking into account the education and teaching support they have had.
How common is Dyslexia?
It can be hard to be precise, as many studies don’t look at people’s history and therefore can’t tell the difference between Dyslexia, Alexia and illiteracy due to lack of education. It’s commonly stated that 10 % of the population have Dyslexia1. Studies of children in the UK estimate the prevalence is between 2.3 % and 6.2 %2-4 whereas those from the US suggest the prevalence is between 8.3 % and 12.0 %5-7.
Common challenges described by adults with Dyslexia
- Reluctance to disclose Dyslexia to others. This may be related to poor prior experiences of doing so.
- Difficulty filling in forms, especially if hand-written.
- Difficulty reading quickly.
- Taking longer to read documents.
- Make spelling errors or miss out key words.
- Difficulty structuring their writing.
- Difficulty writing down information accurately while on the phone.
Adults with Dyslexia may also have other, related problems, e.g.:
- Remembering things, e.g. appointments, instructions, items to bring to meetings.
- Finding their way around unfamiliar places.
There are a variety of ways to support someone with Dyslexia.
- Discuss what adjustments the person thinks they may need / what has helped previously.
- Provide templates for written work
- Provide any material to be read for meetings (minutes, papers) in advance in a user-friendly format.
- Colour-code and/or underline important text and using an easy-read font (e.g. Arial)
- Encourage the use of spell-checking, proof-reading and text-to-speech software to aid reading and writing.
- Check the individual is confident using the software; provide training if needed.
Strengths some people describe:
- Out going
- See Resource hub for links to organisations