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Dyslexia is a learning disability that affects approximately 10 per cent of the population. Despite having average or above average intelligence, people with dyslexia have difficulty in reading, and in other language-based tasks such as writing and spelling.
Dyslexia is believed to be a neurological disorder with a hereditary component, although no gene has yet been identified as causing the disorder. Brain imaging techniques show that people with dyslexia process phonological information (i.e. sound-based information) in a different area of the brain than non-dyslexics.
There are variations in the type and severity of the learning disability that people with dyslexia have, so treatment is directed at special education techniques tailored to their specific needs.
Although the outlook for people with dyslexia depends on the severity of their disorder, the majority live normal, productive lives.
Further Information and Support
Australian Dyslexia Association Inc
The Dyslexia-Speld Foundation WA
10 Broome Street, SOUTH PERTH WA 6151 (Po Box 409, South Perth WA 6951)
Tel (08) 9217 2500
Fax (08) 9217 2599
National Institution of Neurological Disorders and Stroke
The International Dyslexia Association
Reviewed by Dr Laurie Miller, Clinical Neuropsychologist, Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Camperdown.