What is Dyslexia?
If you’re new to Dyslexia, you’re probably wondering who’s cruel joke it was to give a condition for people with spelling difficulties, a name that is so darn difficult to spell! For this, you can thank the Greek. In Greek ‘Dys’ means difficult and ‘Lexis’ means words. i.e. Difficulty with words.
In English, Dyslexia is an umbrella term for a condition where an individual who, despite a normal level of intelligence, has difficulty with a range of tasks that involve processing, most commonly reading, writing, short term memory and organisation. Being dyslexic doesn’t mean you are stupid or lazy. It means your brain takes a little longer to process the information it needs to perform certain tasks.
How will it affect me?
If you think about it, reading for example, is a hugely complex process:
- Our eyes see an image and send it to our brain for processing
- Our brains processing center decide that the image is language and send it to our brains language-processing region
- Here the letters are sequenced. The sound of that letter combination is processed and is sent to the word recognition and audio processing centers.
- After a few microseconds, we are able to understand the word or reproduce that sound through speech.
- We start the whole process again for the next word.
As you can see, reading is one hell of a process and in a dyslexic brain this process doesn’t flow through the brain smoothly, or tasks are processed in the wrong part of the brain. The knock on effect is, tasks like reading and writing can be frustrating and exhausting.
The emotional side of things
We’ve talked about how dyslexia can affect your ability to perform certain tasks, but the emotional side effects of this can also be a significant issue for many Dyslexics. This generally arises from being in situations where people have little understanding of Dyslexia. It’s difficult when you’re working as hard as you can, but still can’t keep pace with your colleagues or are accused of being slow, stupid or lazy. Many Dyslexics struggle with feelings of worthlessness, stupidity, depression and low self-esteem. If you recognize any of these symptoms please seek advice from a Dyslexia professional or call one of the helplines in the side bar of this site.
The dyslexic advantage
So that’s the bad news out of the way. Being dyslexic also has many upsides. If you can workout how Dyslexia effects you in a positive way, it can be a real advantage.
The chances are, as a dyslexic you’ll excel in things that are creative. This does not mean you have to be a painter or a musician. Creativity means seeing the mundane and ordinary in fantastic new ways. This ability can be useful in the world of business, science, teaching, law, architecture…the list goes on. In the same way that taking a new route to work can allow you to see a routine task in a brand new light. The extra time and wrong turns, that processing information takes moving through a dyslexic brain, will allow you to come up with ideas and solutions that would pass others by.
So in a nutshell, at various stages through your life Dyslexia will make things difficult. But if you can work out and nurture your strengths, you will fly.
Now that you know all about Dyslexia we’d like to congratulate you on finding one of the best places for dyslexics to hangout online. This site is full of content that will inspire, inform and entertain you. Once you’ve had a look around you’ll realise, being a dyslexic is a pretty awesome.
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