Dysgraphia is a learning disability where a person experiences difficulty while graphing and writing. People suffering from dysgraphia may find it difficult to form letters like p, q, b, or d and may also not be cross-dominant (an ability where a person may be able to perform certain tasks with the right hand and others with the left without being ambidextrous). Dysgraphia, by itself, is not a mental disorder, because those suffering from it may not always suffer from intellectual impairment. Dysgraphia is classified into three main types namely dyslexic dysgraphia, spatial dysgraphia and motor dysgraphia. A person is said to be suffering from dyslexic dysgraphia when his or her written work is found to be illegible when written spontaneously and fairly legible when copied from another source. People suffering from spatial dysgraphia will have illegible writing skills (spontaneous and copied) but their spellings will be fine and motor functions of the finger will also be normal. Those suffering from motor dysgraphia, as the name suggests, display the prevalence of poor motor skills in the finger.
Signs & Symptoms of Dysgraphia
A person with dysgraphia will display a multitude of symptoms that are all linked to the person’s inability to use written means of communication effectively. Some of these symptoms are explained here below.
A person suffering from dysgraphia will have illegible handwriting when he or she writes spontaneously. In some cases, writing when copying from another source will be fair to legible. In other cases, the person may also find it difficult to form the simplest of characters and will take extremely long to draw them. There are also occasions when the person may also be found paying very close attention to the movement of the pen as he or she writes.
People suffering from dysgraphia have a tendency to hold pens and pencils in very odd ways.
Dysgraphic people also tend to suffer from pain which starts in the arm and spreads to the entire body. This makes it difficult for them to continue writing for extended periods of time. This pain can be the source of a person being reluctant or refusing to complete written assignments.
Confusion In Writing Style
The written works of a dysgraphic person will include a mixture of cursive and print writing. The written work will also contain a mixture of upper and lower case letters in places where they need not be used.
Size Of Letters
The handwriting of a dysgraphic person will also reveal an inconsistency in the size of the letters. Some will be too big, others too small and some will also be incomplete.
The main points that indicate dysgraphia in terms of the accuracy of the written material are the presence of random punctuation marks, words that have been spelt incorrectly and, in some cases; the same word being spelt in different ways throughout the paper.
Another symptom that may indicate that a person is suffering from dysgraphia is that they will be found talking to themselves while writing. Dysgraphia can be set aside as learning disorder, but due to the fact that the symptoms are not understood properly many people fail to receive aid. It must be remembered that dysgraphia is treatable and should be given due attention.