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How Is Dyslexia Diagnosed?
Dyslexia doesn’t have a physical cause, so there is no physical exam or laboratory test that can detect the presence of the disorder. Instead, a doctor will focus on assessments of a child’s developmental and educational performance to determine whether the child’s symptoms are consistent with dyslexia. There will also probably be an effort to rule out other possible causes for the symptoms.
- Developmental history. Your healthcare provider will ask questions about your child’s language development and current language skills. He or she will also ask about the child’s medical history to rule out other health factors that could contribute to the symptoms.
- Family history. The provider will look for a family history of dyslexia, as well as other environmental factors that could be significant.
- Physical and neurological exams. These exams will check the child’s vision, hearing, and neurological functions to rule out physical problems other than dyslexia that could be causing the symptoms.
- Psychological assessments. The provider may also administer exams or questionnaires meant to rule out psychological conditions such as depression or anxiety that could be responsible for learning difficulties.
- Cognitive and educational assessments. These exams and questionnaires will be aimed at accurately assessing the child’s language and reading skills to pinpoint exactly where the learning difficulties lie.
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