Dyslexia is actually a broad term used to describe a family of closely related disorders that are classified based on their associated symptoms. By breaking down dyslexia into three more specific subtypes, parents, educators and interventionists can better plan services to meet the child’s specific needs. The types of dyslexia are determined according to the presence of visual or auditory deficits or a combination thereof.
Children who have the dyseidetic form of dyslexia have difficulties spelling and decoding words because they cannot visualize how the word is supposed to look. This visual form of dyslexia causes children to interchange letters (such as p for q) and have a limited sight vocabulary, that is, they have very few words that they can immediately recognize. Instead, children have to laboriously sound words out. However, children with this form of dyslexia generally have no difficulty spelling words that are phonetically regular. It’s the nonphonetic words that cause them difficulty. Dyseidetic dyslexia is likely the most common among the types of dyslexia.
In this form of dyslexia, children have difficulty connecting the sounds of words to the individual letters that make those sounds. In that regard, it is a problem with auditory processing. Children with this form of dyslexia also have difficulty blending individual sounds into words. Similarly, they exhibit a reduced ability to remember what words sound like. Without a good grasp of phonetic rules, children will have extreme difficulty analyzing and pronouncing new words and will usually ignore unfamiliar words or substitute other words in when reading. Spelling is also generally poor because children attempt to spell words by sight rather than by sound.
Children who have both visual and auditory processing difficulties have dysphoneidetic dyslexia. These children have the combined symptomology of dyseidetic and dysphonetic dyslexia: They are unable to remember whole words based on sight and also cannot break down words phonetically. Among the types of dyslexia, this is by far the most severe and difficult to treat.
Children with any subtype of dyslexia will face a lot of frustration and embarrassment, especially in school. However, although there is no cure for dyslexia, with classroom accommodations, tutoring and emotional support, children can learn to manage the disorder and be successful students. Additionally, exercises that recalibrate the vestibular system and improve sensory integration skills have been shown to reduce the symptoms of dyslexia. For more information about dyslexia and treatments for the types of dyslexia, go to https://learningbreakthrough.com/specific-challenges/dyslexia-reading-challenges.