signs and symptoms of dyslexia in teenagers

Signs & Symptoms of dyslexia in teenagers

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MEDICALLY REVIEWED BY NUMBERDYSLEXIA’S MEDICAL REVIEW PANEL ON JUNE 29, 2020

Dyslexia is a condition that affects the ability to process language. This condition involves both the spoken and written language, and the affected person may have difficulty in expressing themselves through linguistic mediums. Some children are diagnosed in the early school years, but sometimes it may present in a way that is difficult to diagnose.

Afflicted children may be deemed as lazy, stupid or troublemakers. To cover embarrassing situations where they are unable to keep up with the class, dyslexic children often disrupt and disturb the class. It requires active participation and awareness from the parents and educators to understand when the child has difficulty in learning and is not being naughty.

Some common symptoms of Dyslexia in teenage

It is commonly seen that children with Dyslexia learn to work around the disability in ingenious ways. They may seem unruly and lazy or even stupid to some, but there are some characteristics that may help screen for Dyslexia. The symptoms are similar as in childhood, but may be more pronounced.

  • The first issue that leaps out is a problem in reading aloud. The dyslexic teenager cannot comprehend the phonetic connections between words and that makes reading difficult.
  • Both reading and writing can be slow and laborious. The handwriting will not be neat and work tends to be untidy.
  • Spellings can be a major issue with dyslexic teenagers who have somehow learnt to read and write. They can end up spelling the same word in different ways on the same page.
  • Dyslexic teenagers can have problems in pronouncing words, names and other words at times. They might also have difficulty in retrieving words from memory. This is a common phenomenon as the connection between words and the object is not established properly.
  • Reading a map or distinguishing the ‘right’ from ‘left’ is hard for these children. They often have a problem in giving or receiving directions.
  • Abstract expressions such as idioms or metaphors seem unintelligible to dyslexics. They are not able to understand the expressions that denote a feeling.
  • Most dyslexic teenagers will shy away from any activities that require reading or writing. It may be taken as being under average in academics, but is the result of a learning disability.
  • Subjects requiring rote memory are difficult for such children.
  • Languages per se are an issue. Not only the mother tongue, but learning a foreign language is also difficult.
  • Some dyslexics could also have the phobia of learning numbers or Dyscalculia.
  • Finishing tasks and tests on time can be an issue.
  • They also have trouble reading a clock with hands. Children who are dyslexic prefer numeric clocks.
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There are many teenagers who display one of these symptoms. That is not necessarily a sign of Dyslexia. If there are more than three or four of these signs in a child, it is a good idea to get them tested for Dyslexia. There are standardized tests available with psychologists that can establish whether a teenager is dyslexic or not. Dealing with Dyslexia is not easy and involves a lot of patience from all stakeholders, namely, the teenager, parents and teachers. But, these children are often above average in intelligence and can definitely be helped in leading a normal school life.


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