Dyslexia and fidgeting/ sensory issues

(12 Posts)
Hermagsjesty Fri 26-Jul-19 09:01:56

My DD (7) is being assessed for dyslexia. She’s a very confident, articulate child. She reads really well but has issues with expressing herself in writing - and particularly with spelling.

She’s always been very fidgety - and bites and picks her fingernails until they bleed. She also seems to have sensory issues around clothes, often finding things uncomfortable- in particular it is very, very difficult to find socks she’ll happily wear.

I just wondered if either the fidgeting/ nail biting or the problems with feeling comfortable in her clothes could be linked to her possible dyslexia?

Anyone with any experience of this? Any suggestions of anything I could try to help her?


OP’s posts: |
Norestformrz Fri 26-Jul-19 17:12:19

Have you thought about investigating sensory regulation difficulties?

Soontobe60 Fri 26-Jul-19 17:21:52

No. I would also be surprised if she received a diagnosis of dyslexia if she can read really well. In itself, having poor spelling doesn't necessarily mean she is dyslexic.
She may be quite anxious, or have some sensory sensitivity around touch. Who is doing the assessment for dyslexia?

Hermagsjesty Fri 26-Jul-19 17:31:01

The school. They seem pretty certain she might be because of the nature of the spelling mistakes she makes e.g they showed us a piece of writing where she had spelt ‘help’ several different ways within a few sentences. My DH (her Dad) is quite severely dyslexic but doesn’t have any of the sensory issues. She is quite anxious by nature.

OP’s posts: |
Hermagsjesty Fri 26-Jul-19 18:18:16

When I say anxious - she’s very chatty and bubbly but she worries, especially at night - she won’t go upstairs alone because she’s scared of “baddies lurking” for example.

OP’s posts: |
PantsyMcPantsface Sat 27-Jul-19 17:00:59

My child is dyspraxic and definitely has a load of sensory quirks - from loving to be squashed, to skin picking any possible blemish going and clothes chewing. She has a few different fiddle toys she uses in school to try to reduce things like the skin picking.

statetrooperstacey Sat 27-Jul-19 17:32:41

My son is dyslexic and sound very similar to your daughter. Don’t know if related or not, however he had fiddler at school, the school handed them out in the classroom to the fidgeters😁 so it must be a common problem! he also had a lot of success with taking a little lump of blue tac in to fiddle with. We tried various things but blu tac was the best.


EskSmith Sat 27-Jul-19 17:40:17

Soontobe60. It is hard to get schools to assess a child who is a good reader for dyslexia, it doesn't mean they won't have dyslexia however. You'd be surprised what you can achieve with sheer determination (a very common feature of dyslexia sufferers)

My dd2 reads well, nowhere near a match for her vocabulary which recieved a scaled score of 119 (where 120 is the max)
Like your dd Hermagsjesty, she can't spell, spelling the same word 3 different ways in the same sentence, let alone the same paragraph.
My dd sucks her thumb when her senses are overloaded, we're trying really really hard to replace this with a fiddle toy.

Hermagsjesty Sat 27-Jul-19 19:31:14

@statetrooperstacey she really loves playing with blue tack.

@EskSmith she is also a chronic thumb sucker. She’s managed to mostly stop in the day but it still creeps in when she’s over tired and at night.

Thanks all for your replies. I’ll look into fiddle toys.

OP’s posts: |
Redpostbox Sat 27-Jul-19 21:07:59

My dyslexic son used to get very anxious if he had to do any reading/writing etc and he used to twitch, he developed a nervous tic.
School were rubbish. He is early teens and it has improved - we got him a specialist dyslexia tutor from PATOSS website and this helped his confidence and eventually his anxiety and the fidgeting and finally the tic went.

Norestformrz Sun 28-Jul-19 07:46:25

My school uses this occupational therapy service http://futurestepsconsultancy.co.uk
A therapist carries out assessments, provides programmes, trains staff (and parents) and delivers programmes in school ...perhaps you have something similar in your area. We have certainly seen an impact for children with DCD, sensory difficulties, ASD and other issues.

Soontobe60 Sun 28-Jul-19 08:05:10

Soontobe60. It is hard to get schools to assess a child who is a good reader for dyslexia, it doesn't mean they won't have dyslexia however. You'd be surprised what you can achieve with sheer determination (a very common feature of dyslexia sufferers)

I know, I'm a Senco! It's not that it's hard to do so, just that the LA team where I am no longer carry out formal assessment for dyslexia. I am able to screen for it, but that just gives a risk indicator.
For a child who can read well, but has poor spelling, I would still use spelling interventions to address this, diagnosis or not.
As regards the bit about sheer determination, yes whilst it's true and we can all name some very famous people who are dyslexic, again my experience of children with severe dyslexia is the opposite. It's bloody hard work to not be able to read or write in school when you're surrounded by others who can. It's mentally exhausting. Almost every lesson is a struggle and no matter what you do it always will be. Having adaptations for those children is vital. If you have lower intelligence and are also dyslexic it's a double whammy.

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