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Your Guide to Understanding Dysgraphia


Have you ever suffered from the occasional writer’s block? Moreover, do you find it difficult to put down words on paper?  Many people struggle at one time or another to fully harness writing abilities, but eventually succeed. However, if your child struggles with any of these specific set of writing challenges, you may exhibit underlying symptoms of a neurological issue known as dysgraphia:

  • Poor handwriting
  • Trouble putting thoughts to paper
  • Difficulty with spacing
  • Frequent erasing
  • Poor spelling, grammar, and inconsistency with lettering
  • Unusual writing position while writing

What is Dysgraphia?

Dysgraphia is referred to as “written expression disorder,” dysgraphia impairs a person’s writing ability and motor skills. This is commonly found in individuals with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD or ADD). According to a medically reviewed website article called ADDitude, Devon Frye estimates that 5 to 20 percent of all children have some types of writing deficit like dysgraphia, whether it be dyslexia or dyscalculia, along with ADHD or ADD.

What are the Causes of Dysgraphia?

According to Healthline, dysgraphia can develop in a several ways. When it comes to the early development of dysgraphia, this is usually the result of a problem rooted in the child’s orthographic coding. This affects the part of your brain connected to working memory, which, in turn, affects your ability to remember written words and positioning of yourself while writing. For adults, the cause of dysgraphia could be more severe. When dysgraphia develops in adults, this is usually the result of a stroke or a serious brain-related injury.

How is Dysgraphia Diagnosed?

The process of diagnosing dysgraphia often requires attention from a licensed psychologist or physician. There are other alternatives to diagnose children through the administration of an IQ test and academic work. For adults, receiving a diagnosis involves additional writing tests and observation during written work.

Are There Treatments Available?

There are a plethora of treatments available for anyone with dysgraphia as well as individuals with additional learning disabilities. Occupational therapy is one option for people looking to improve their handwriting skills and positioning. For those who have additional learning disabilities, medication can be provided for those who have ADHD, dyslexia, etc.

Accommodating Dysgraphia in School and at Work

Here are some tips for accommodating dysgraphia at your school or work:

  • Choose the option of typing notes for class or meetings
  • Utilize other writing instruments with special grips
  • Use lined paper with specific markings to help with the format

Final Thoughts About Managing Dysgraphia

When a child begins to experience delays in their learning, it is often difficult to know whether there is a need to be concerned about their progress, as well as the necessary steps to take. Any struggling student should have a complete evaluation by a qualified specialist. It is never too late during the school-age years to intervene to improve a student’s deficient skills and provide appropriate accommodations. For more helpful tips and resources to better support students with dysgraphia, make sure to subscribe to our blog.