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Living With Dysgraphia Disability

Several kinds of disabilities can assail a human being. One such disability is Dysgraphia, which is a problem connected with an individualís writing ability. A person affected with Dysgraphia possesses incorrect or distorted writing. Bad handwriting, wrong spellings and the difficulties they exhibit while trying to put their ideas on paper are some indications of this disability. Such individuals, in general, possess an above average IQ. Dysgraphia is caused by a sort of dysfunction of the nervous system, in other words, brain disorder.

Dysgraphia may exist in two forms- specific and non-specific. A person might be mentally retarded, having less attendance in the school or be psycho-socially deprived. These may add up to non-specific Dysgraphia, whereas specific Dysgraphia results from coordination problems and lack of spelling and language skills. Dysgraphia consists of three categories: Motor Dysgraphia: An individual with this disability, has weak muscle tone, lacks sharp motor skills and dexterity and shows motor clumsiness. The spellings may not be accurate, but they are able to write a small paragraph and their letter formation is satisfactory.

Besides, they need a lot of effort and a long time to complete this work and feel uncomfortable doing it continuously. The handwriting is of low quality. The speed of their finger tapping is not normal as well. Dyslexic Dysgraphia: An individual suffering from Dyslexic Dysgraphia has abnormal spelling skills and illegible writing, but the copied work is fairly acceptable and the finger tapping speed is passable. The symptoms of Dyslexic Dysgraphia differ considerably from those of Dyslexia. Spatial Dysgraphia: This kind of Dysgraphia arises from the failure to understand the space properly. There might be difficulty in making out their written and copied works whilst they enjoy normal spelling skills and finger tapping speed. Some Common Signs and Symptoms to identify Dysgraphia are: The persons affected with Dysgraphia have illegible hand writing, but their verbal skill is strong. Inconsistency is visible everywhere in their work, in mixing lower and upper case, letters with irregular shape, size and slant, mixing of cursive and print, the space between words and letters and also in the positioning of margins and lines on the page. Punctuations and syllables are missing; wrong spellings and suffixes with disorders in numbers and syntax also cannot be ruled out.

Such persons show a tendency to hold the pen very close to the paper or use the wrist to write by placing the thumb over two fingers. They possess the habit of looking at writing hands or utter something to themselves. The paper, wrist and body positions never match with a normal writing position. Even if they produce fairly neat work, it is done with low speed and with great effort. Diagnosis: Mere handwriting problem is not sufficient to confirm Dysgraphia. Several tests have to be conducted to ascertain Dysgraphia, like making the person write self-made paragraphs, giving a particular portion to be copied. A detailed assessment of the position and posture of the individual is made, like how the pencil is held, whether any cramps, shivers are found in the writing hand and many more including finger tapping speed. Treatments: Various treatments are available for Dysgraphia. Treating motor disorders might improve writing movements. A neurosurgeon can cure neurological problems and elevate memory power.

Occupational therapy helps in strengthening the muscle tone bringing coordination between eye and hand, improving dexterity and holding the pen in the proper way. Indeed, it is a disorder but a lot can be done to overcome it. A person suffering from Dysgraphia is definitely not a hopeless case.


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