When learning disabilities first manifest, they are often interpreted as behavior problems that are best countered with discipline or stringent structure. School officials may even suggest that the student will "grow out of" the behavior and develop an interest in school when the discipline helps the child develop self-control.
However, learning disabilities are neurological disorders. While symptoms may diminish as the child matures, it is disputed whether the shortcomings resolve with age or the child finds better coping mechanisms. Due to the painful impacts that can occur with unresolved learning disorders, using the wait and see approach can have significant consequences.
Impacts of Untreated Learning Disabilities
Without further help and therapy, students who suffer learning disabilities will struggle in school. As success continues to appear unattainable, the child becomes frustrated and eventually loses interest in learning. Any natural curiosity may become suppressed as the child develops a fear of failure. As time passes and frustration increases, children with untreated learning disabilities experience low self-esteem, social withdrawal, anxiety, depression, or aggression and anger issues.
It is estimated that 20% of children who suffer learning disabilities also suffer from ADHD. Studies show that while only 30% of adults who exhibit ADHD as children still suffer symptoms in adulthood, when left untreated, these adults face serious impacts. 81% of adults with untreated ADHD suffer additional mental disorders including substance abuse, personality disorders, bipolar, anxiety and depression.
Early intervention is optimal.
Learning disabilities are often not noticed until the child starts school; however that is also the best time to address learning disabilities. School work and testing provides a record of which subject matter shows a shortcoming in learning and that makes it easier to narrow down testing to find the particular brain deficiency causing the learning disability. While learning disabilities affect all school subjects, they will affect some more than others.
The sooner learning disabilities are addressed the sooner academic frustration can end.
Learning disabilities don’t just disappear—but are treatable.
Learning disabilities have nothing to do with intelligence but with the way the brain is wired. With educational therapy, children can strengthen and develop the foundational brain skills causing their school struggles. Rather than fear challenge, children can begin to embrace the challenge knowing they have the skills to take it on.
With testing, we can determine where you child needs help and design an individualized therapy program. You do not need to wait until your child is a certain age or hope that the problem somehow resolves itself. This can be addressed at any age and end the discouraging cycle caused by learning disabilities.