Specific Learning Disorder (often referred to as learning disorder or learning disability) is a disorder that begins during school-age, although it may not be recognised until adulthood. Learning disabilities refers to ongoing problems in one of three areas: reading, writing and math.  Unfortunately these areas are foundational to one’s ability to learn.

Other specific skills that may be impacted include the ability to put thoughts into written words, spelling, reading comprehension, math calculation and math problem solving. Difficulties with these skills may cause problems in learning subjects such as history, maths, science and social studies and may impact everyday activities.  Behavioural problems can also be a consequence of a learning disorder.

Learning disorders, if not recognized and managed, can cause problems throughout a person’s life beyond having lower academic achievement. These problems include increased risk of greater psychological distress, poorer overall mental health, unemployment/under-employment and dropping out of school.

Learning Disorders can include

  • Dyslexia (difficulty reading, spelling, writing and speaking)
  • Dyscalculia (difficulty in mathematics)
  • Dysgraphia (difficulties with spelling and/or trouble putting thoughts on paper)
  • Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD)

An estimated 5 to 15 percent of school-age children struggle with a learning disability.

An estimated 80 percent of those with learning disorders have reading disorder in particular (commonly referred to as dyslexia). One-third of people with learning disabilities are estimated to also have attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

Why diagnosis is important

The benefits of Early Diagnosis and Early Intervention have been well established for Learning Disorders. Often it is not only the client who suffers. As with any disability these disorders are associated with high burden for the family and carers mostly due to lack of direction and support on how to best manage clients with these conditions.

Early diagnosis can improve early access to assistance. In addition to accessing appropriate medical treatment, early diagnosis also facilitates appropriate intervention for the individual and family or carers by adding appropriate support and/or respite, reducing carer burnout and improving overall functional capacity of the individual.

Early intervention for children of schooling age may impact their ability to remain in mainstream schools, to integrate better socially, and may also increase their capacity to mitigate their own functional deficits.

We can help!

The Shrink Academy has specialised clinicians with a broad range of skills and experience in diagnosis, management, and treatment of both cognitive disorders and neurodevelopment disorders.  In collaboration with our partners at The Shrink Company, we have in-house clinicians in Psychology, Occupational Therapy and Behavioural Support domains, we are able to provide a wraparound service for clients in need.

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