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Dyslexia and Genetics

Posted by Constance Avey on


Did I pass on my dyslexia? The answer to that question is ‘very probably’. Research shows that genes do play a role in dyslexia, causing a significant chance of dyslexia being passed down through generations. There are six possible genes that may contribute to dyslexia; however other factors can contribute to causing this condition. There is no guarantee that dyslexia will be passed down, yet Dr. Beve Hornsby found that 88% of dyslexics had relatives who had similar problems with reading and spelling.

 The first dyslexic gene was not discovered until October 2005. This could potentially mean that many parents of children with dyslexia may have had no idea that they themselves have the condition and that they passed it onto their next generation. Some of these dyslexic children may struggle, even with the aid of their family, as the family member helping them may be dyslexic as well without realising it. Thankfully, there are so many excellent programmes available now to help parents learn how to support their children with dyslexia, through great resources and lessons. These programmes may also help the potentially dyslexic family member at the same time;  they can learn new skills and ways to help themselves as well as their children. They can learn to complete tasks in a better, more manageable way for them and, hopefully, for their children as well.  

                Obviously, better dyslexia awareness prepares parents to help their children learn in different ways that are more effective for them. Parents with bad experiences due to their own dyslexia can make sure that their child does not have to go through these same experiences. Better awareness of dyslexia can help them  understand that their child is just as capable as others without dyslexia.  Although it may be a parents’ worst nightmare to pass down a gene that has led them to struggle through education, it can also be a good thing. They can support their children and give them advice from first-hand experiences. This knowledge and understanding from a parent can be the key to the success for any dyslexic.


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