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How Do I Know If I Have Dyslexia?

Published: February 19, 2014
Dear How Do I Know If I Have Dyslexia?,

How do I know if I have dyslexia?

Dear How Do I Know If I Have Dyslexia?,

Dyslexia is a type of learning disability. A person with a learning disability has difficulty processing words, numbers, and other types of information. A person who is dyslexic has a hard time learning how to read. This has nothing to do with effort or intelligence, but occurs because of the way that the brain processes the information.

According to TeensHealth, signs that a teen may be dyslexic can include:

  • poor reading skills, despite having normal intelligence
  • poor spelling and writing skills
  • difficulty finishing assignments and tests within time limits
  • difficulty remembering the right names for things
  • difficulty memorizing written lists and phone numbers
  • difficulty with directions (telling right from left or up from down) or reading maps
  • difficulty getting through foreign language classes

If you notice any of these symptoms or have any reason to believe you might be dyslexic, speak to your parents about it so they can set up an evaluation for you. It would be helpful for you to meet with your doctor to rule out any medical issues (for example, issues with vision or hearing). If there are no medical issues it would be helpful for you to meet with a psychologist (through your school or privately) who can do the appropriate testing to find out whether or not you might be dyslexic.

If you don't have a doctor and live in northern New Jersey, you can call the Adolescent/Young Adult Center for Health at 973-971-5199 for an appointment with an adolescent medicine specialist or contact your local teen health center. You can also contact your insurance company for a list of in-network providers.

For more information, read TeensHealth article on Understanding Dyslexia and the Mayo Clinic article on Dyslexia.