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Dyslexia is a specific learning difficulty which makes it hard for some people to learn to read, write and spell correctly. It is not a disease or a defect, merely a difference in learning style. It is genetic, one is born with it. It is surprisingly common, up to 8% of the population may be affected to some degree. It is generally believed that many more men than women have dyslexia. It is not caused by any physical problem with eyesight or hearing, low intelligence, emotional disturbance, poor teaching or family problems, though it can co-exist with any of these. Dyslexia cannot be cured, but with early identification and appropriate teaching, people with dyslexia can achieve their potential, which in many cases is considerable.

Some of the indicators that an adult may have dyslexia include: an unsatisfactory school experience where effort put in was not rewarded by results; reluctance to read aloud, particularly when new material is involved; erratic and/or phonetic mis-spelling; poor short-term memory; lack of organisational and time management skills; badly formed handwriting; poor grammar and sentence construction; difficulty with orientation i.e. knowing left from right; and a family history of dyslexia. Many adults with dyslexia still experience difficulty with remembering multiplication tables in sequence, taking down telephone numbers and in basic arithmetic.

Assistive technology is particularly useful for people with dyslexia. Word processors, spell and grammar checkers, voice operated software, screen readers, scanners and lesser items such as electronic dictionaries and reading pens make life and work much more manageable.

Dyslexia Association of Ireland
Suffolk Chambers
1 Suffolk Street
Dublin 2
work Tel: +353 (0)1 679 0276
work fax Fax: +353 (0)1 679 0273

Dyslexia Association of Ireland (DAI) services include a free public information service, psycho-educational assessment of children and adults, group and individual specialist tuition, in-service courses for teacher, summer schools, speakers for school and parent groups. The association has 35 branches.

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