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Any dyslexia experts out there? ADD and dyslexia?

(16 Posts)
fullmoonfiend Sat 25-Nov-06 16:19:23

I know that many characteristics of dyslexia are similar to symptoms of ADD. (ie, distractibility, forgetting things, disorganised)
But how can I tell if it's 'just' the dyslexia or whether he's ADD as well?

fullmoonfiend Sat 25-Nov-06 16:38:48


fullmoonfiend Sat 25-Nov-06 18:15:59

somebody say something - even if you can't help - stop me feeling paranoid at least

LIZS Sat 25-Nov-06 18:19:28

Those traits could be characterisitic of several "disorders" such as dyspraxia/dcd which may coexist with dyslexia and are not necessarily specific to ADD. Have you had an actual assessment done ?

eca Sat 25-Nov-06 18:30:51

Dh has dyslexia and when he had his text to diagnose (wasn't picked up until v late on) they explained that the diagnosis comes when some of your abilities are rated at one level and then there is a really big gap and you are rated at a different level for others. It's about the gap rather than the actual symptom.

However there are some common symptoms, but people may not necessarily have them all. Things like: poor co-ordination, struggling doing up shoelaces etc; poor spelling, swapping letters; finding it hard to remember strings of numbers, tel. no's etc.

I think the only way to tell properely is a dyslexia test. Schools should be able to easily arrange one.

Hope that helps! Not sure if it totally answers your question. I'm afraid I don't know lots about ADD.

fullmoonfiend Sat 25-Nov-06 19:03:18

sorry, should explain he's definitely dyslexic (diagnosed) but his school are not terribly supportive or knowledgeable (neither am I!) and i am trying to look objectively at him and his problems at school and wondering if some of the behaviour he's showing at school which I 'blame' on dyslexia might be something else as well, ie ADD. But so many of the symproms seem to cross over. I'm really not desperate to label him anything, but I'm just trying to find out how to help him. How would one test him for ADD?

Lizs - what's dcd?

LIZS Sat 25-Nov-06 19:14:32

DCD = Developmental coordination diosorder aka Dyspraxia. who diagnosed the dyslexia ? Perhaps they could refer your ds for further assessment with an Educational Psychologist or Developmental Paediatrician to rule it out ? Someone on MN once described these disorders as like the Olympic Rings , with overlaps into common areas so while it is possible to have more than one disorder, that is not necessarily the case iyswim for any given trait.

fullmoonfiend Sat 25-Nov-06 19:19:02

ah thanks Lizs. He ticks a couple of boxes for dyxpraxia - but guess what! The same ones as you could expect with dyslexia..sigh. He isn't at all uncoordinated with things like running, swimming, gym etc and he was very early at crawling,walking etc but he does have huge writing problems. (just learned to tie showlaces hoorah! (at almost 9 )

He was diagnosed at Dyslexia Institute.

CantWaitForTheSnow Mon 27-Nov-06 16:09:14

His school (or Local Authority) should be able to put you in touch with an educational psychologist who will be able to diagnose. I think it costs about £200, but should be fairly conclusive - if thats ever possible with ADD. Where in the country are you?

Rummum Mon 27-Nov-06 16:41:34

You know fullmoonfiend, I've often wondered about my DD having ADD and dyslexia as well, she has a diagnosis of dyspraxia and aspergers tendencies..
I think as LIZ said... these conditions overlap like the olympic rings... My daughter is the most dreadful speller.. spelt eney instead of any the other day... but can get 20 out of 20 in her really hard spellings each week in test conditions... mind you she's forgotten them the next day.. [bless her] she is really dreamy and dopey as well... (in a lovely way)...
Not sure I'm being any real help here, what do the school think... I'm not sure who diagnosis add...

fizzbuzz Mon 27-Nov-06 19:47:57

I believe if you ask local authority for an assessment they are obliged to provide it by law.
However they will try everything to get out of it because they don't want to part with the cash

I had ds assessed privately. It was expensive, but so worth it, as all problems and quirks fell into place.

fullmoonfiend Thu 30-Nov-06 11:02:28

I mean, for example, I have a checklist which i gave to the teachers (on their request) which lists 'symptoms' of dyslexia, which include:
''Is the standard of his work erratic'' (oh yes!)
Does the standard of reading and/or written work fall below expectations of ability {Oh yes - not reading but writing!!)
Is he unable to remember a list of instructions (yes, yes yes)
Does he spell same word in a variety of ways (ditto)
Does he have difficulty in copying from baord
Is he clumsy n some respects but very good in others (ie manipulating things like lego? (this is my child!
IUs he the classsroom clown
Is his concentration poor

Then, i get the teachers complaining to me 'he can do it perfectly well if he tries. ''he needs to concetrate more' 'he needs to stop clowning' ''he's careless' 'he just needs to focus'' ''he doesn't look carefully' 'his work is a disgrace, it's so messy'.blah blah blah.

And I think ''crapola! Who needs the help in reading round here teacher?''

Then they say ''do you think he's ADAH? (er no, he may have attention problems but in no way i hyperactive)

I say ''do you mean ADD?''
They say ''whatever''

Point is, see how many of these symnptoms might equally apply to ADD or dyspraxia or anything else?

But I don't understand why they can't see all his problems fall under the dyslexia umbrella.

Sorry for the rambling rant - I guess i'm trying to reassure myself that they seem unwilling to accept that the dyslexia dx is correct and they want, for some reason, to dismiss his problems as 'behavioural'. Presumably so they can dismiss it as bad parenting in some way rather than accept their responsibility to find a way of teaching that he can relate to.

AlidaB Fri 15-Jun-12 12:30:57

I am new to mumsnet and have just seen this topic. Have you had your child assessed for Irlen Syndrome? My 8yr old Harley was diagnosed with Irlen Syndrome earlier this year. He was diagnosed with Seperation Anxiety, Mild School Phobia and other issues by a child psychologist late last year and all of these traits as well as being Dyslexic are all covered by Irlen syndrome. This is the e-mail address of the person that I had to pay for a diagnosis Tina Yates she is based in St Albans she was absolutely brilliant with my little boy. The diagnosis cost £150 and the lenses for my sons glasses cost £105 they are an immense help to him. We have also discovered that he find flourescent lighting an irritant which causes him to lose concentration easily if he is sat beneath this kind of lighting at school. I hope this information is helpful to you

mrsbaffled Fri 15-Jun-12 13:59:10

To continue on from the last post ... I would second getting a specialist eye test if you haven't already had one. Go to a Behaviour Optometrist (see BABO website for a list).

My son has SPLD in writing, but reads excellently. It turns out he had a severe eye-tracking problem. We have just finished a course of vision therapy and he's improving massively. The VT starts with gross motor work (to deal with any retained primitive reflexes which may still be there - they should go away after birth, but don't always - and these mimic ADHD and other conditions) then moves onto actual eye exercises. My son's coordination has improved and his handwriting and spelling is improving. I put this all down to the VT. Also he is much mich less fidgetty becuase his primitive reflexes have gone.

A BO will also look at Irlen syndrome if they think it's appropriate.

cupboardlove Fri 15-Jun-12 18:53:10

My daughter was dignosed with dyslexia 4 years ago and has recieved limited help from school. Her problem was comprehension. So she could read perfectly well but if you asked her WHAT she had read she would be unable to explain it. so if anyone is worried about dyslexia, PART of a home assessment before paying, (which we did at Dyslexia Action in Birmingham £400) check on comprehension. This was very useful when trying to get her help at school and she now has a reader.

dyslexiaassessmentsorg Fri 02-Nov-12 12:48:29

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