Is there a dyslexia cure?
Like so many other ailments in life, the first question we often have when we realize there is an issue is, “Can this be cured?”
With dyslexia, the simple answer is no. However, with early intervention and individualized teaching mechanisms, dyslexia can become manageable and conquered. Accommodations, assistive technology and one-on-one, multisensory dyslexia intervention provided by a highly trained professional will be the backbone of any successful dyslexia plan.
Studies have discovered that dyslexia is present at birth; it is a neurobiological disorder that affects the parts of the brain involved in language processing. Some of the earliest signs of dyslexia begin to show in the first two years of life. Symptoms to look for include problems learning and remembering the names of letters in the alphabet, difficulty learning the words to common nursery rhymes, being unable to recognize the letters of their name, mispronouncing familiar words, using baby talk and being unable to recognize simple rhyming patterns. In school age children, anxiety and poor fluency are telltale signs dyslexia may be present.
The best advice anyone can give regarding early signs is to not ignore them. Any child with dyslexia has the opportunity to lead a perfectly normal life in school and beyond. Contact a Licensed Dyslexia Therapist or Certified Academic Language Therapist (CALT) as soon as possible. Intervention should be individualized and may involve multi-dimensional techniques to help the child learn letters and words. Phonics, learning phonemes, comprehension, fluency and building vocabulary and keystones to a healthy dyslexia learning plan. Keeping up with your child and their IEP or 504 accommodations will ensure they have the time and space needed for success.
Assistive technology has also made dyslexia easier to manage. Speech recognition software allows users to dictate their writing, so they can get a good visual of each word. There is also text to speech software that will allow easier proofreading. Spellcheck and extensions such as Grammarly help self-edit texts, while smart pens can be used to write with and track text into digital form. Online dyslexia help such as our programs here at DOD offer multisensory structured language therapy sessions to create higher levels of accuracy, fluency and understanding for independence in written language skills. The internet offers a wide range of tools that can benefit anyone with dyslexia at any age.
And, in the end, like with every child, reading aloud and creating a love of the written word is integral. Personal time and patience goes a long way to creating a healthy relationship with the written language. Let your child read aloud to you; be patient, be kind. Building confidence is extremely high on the list to ensure success of every student.
There is no cure for dyslexia. It does not disappear, but it becomes manageable. Building confidence, early intervention and wise use of the tools at your fingertips are great ways to build strong platforms to help anyone rise above their struggles with dyslexia.