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Is My Child Dyslexic? Common Signs of Dyslexia to Look for in Early Childhood


Here’s what to look for when evaluating your child for dyslexia.

Dyslexia is a common neurologically-based disorder that interferes with the processing of language. When children are first starting to learn how to read and write in early childhood, some signs of dyslexia may become clear. It is important that you, as a parent, are aware of these signs, as some signs are more subtle than others. Here’s what to look for when evaluating your child for dyslexia.

History of Delayed Speech

If your child has shown a history of delayed speech, this is one of the first and more noticeable signs of dyslexia. This presents itself as delayed speech in your child well after they have turned two-years-old. Of course, some children are simply more shy or quieter than others. Delayed speech doesn’t necessarily point to dyslexia, but this delay could very well be caused by your child’s confusion with word choice and sentence structure.

History of Stuttering

Stuttering is another fairly prominent part of typical childhood development. When children are first learning how to speak in larger sentences, around ages two or three, it is normal that their thoughts are working more quickly than the motor function of their mouths. However, after the ages of three, if you notice that your child is still having trouble getting words out, it could be a sign of dyslexia.

Difficulty with Words and Patterns

Maybe your child doesn’t stutter, and they also started speaking at a relatively normal age. If this is the case, but you’re still wondering if dyslexia is causing problems, try to take note of words they are having trouble with. Prepositions and directional words can be confusing for young children with dyslexia. If your child has a hard time understanding the difference between words like up and down or in and out, this could be a sign of dyslexia. Another skill to look for is your child’s ability to sequence events in a story and create patterns with different shapes and/or colors.

How Can I Help?

If you suspect your child may have dyslexia, it is best to talk to your child’s teacher first. Your child’s teacher is in tune with your child’s academic needs, and they could very well be seeing the same signs that you are. Having your child tested for dyslexia by an early childhood professional is necessary to see whether or not your child does have a problem, and then you can see what options you have moving forward.

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