Dyslexia is believed to be a neurological condition. The brain has trouble processing images that come in through the eyes and the ears, and then changing them into words. Lack of intelligence is not an issue. Many dyslexics are of average or above average intelligence.
A dyslexic may reverse letters and numbers. Left and right may be confused. They may jumble the letters in a word, saying "nap" instead of "pan".
They may find it hard to write or print. They may not understand what they have read or heard. They may have difficulty writing their thoughts.
It should be noted that very young children may often display these difficulties but also may outgrow them by about age eight. This is very common, and happens to many children. But those who do not outgrow this problem may have dyslexia.
There are three main types of dyslexia: trauma dyslexia, primary dyslexia, and developmental dyslexia.
Trauma dyslexia is what it sounds like. The person has suffered a brain injury which affects the part of the brain that presides over reading, writing and comprehension.
Primary dyslexia is a dysfunction in the left side of the brain, which prevents the person from ever being able to read beyond a grade school level. These folks will always have trouble reading, spelling and writing. This form of dyslexia can be inherited and happens more often in boys than girls.
Developmental dyslexia is caused by a hormone complication during development in the womb. It decreases as the child grows older. It is also found more often in boys.
Dyslexia involves the visual and auditory pathways. Visual problems cause numbers and letters to be reversed, and it is hard to write out what is seen in the proper order. Auditory dyslexia causes difficulty in processing and translating the sounds of words.
Dyslexia can also affect the ability to hold and use a pencil or pen to write or to print. This particular difficulty is known as dysgraphia.
While dyslexia is a difficult condition to deal with, all is not lost. There is a positive side. Many dyslexics, despite problems with processing language, are visual, intuitive and creative.