Dysgraphia Basics


Dysgraphia is a difficulty in coordinating the muscles of the hand and arm, in children who are intellectually normal and do not have severe neurological deficits. This difficulty prevents mastering and directing the pencil to write legibly and neatly.

Dysgraphic writing is usually partially legible, since the student ‘s handwriting can be very small or very large, with poorly formed strokes. The dysgraph cannot respect the line of the line or the relative sizes of the letters, since it presents rigidity in the hand and in its posture. There are even times when he writes in reverse, from right to left.

Dysgraphics, on the other hand, cannot type at normal speed. For this reason, specialists recommend not to put pressure on affected children by demanding that they hurry up.

The concept of dysgraphia can be analyzed from two contexts: neurological (when the disorder is due to a deficit of this type) and functional (the disorder does not respond to brain injuries or sensory problems).

The detection, diagnosis and treatment of dysgraphia requires a specialized intervention, with evaluation instruments that allow establishing a clear and precise clinical picture. When the parents or the teacher notice that the learning process of writing presents alterations, they should go to a specialist to establish the appropriate diagnosis.

It is recommended that corrective therapy begin as soon as possible, since children with dysgraphia suffer in class by not being able to present the work correctly and neatly. To be prepared for a case of dysgraphia that has not yet been detected, we must keep in mind the different signs that can manifest, some of which are listed below:

* writing takes much longer than the rest of the students, as well as being considerably more laborious. Part of the extra effort is due to great difficulty in controlling the pressure of the writing instrument;

* there is an excess of rigidity or laxity in the movements during the use of the pencil;

* Total absence of uniformity in the strokes, with a constant variation. Although the result is generally legible, there are cases of excessive elaboration in the letters to the point that they are very difficult to understand;

* The same letter or word can have different sizes even within a sentence or paragraph;

* difficulty organizing letters when writing a word or phrase;

* the posture during the writing process is incorrect, with the trunk too close to the table or an abnormal inclination forward.

We should not underestimate the magnitude of the impact these difficulties can have on a child’s passage through school. We are facing an obstacle that prevents the normal development of writing, one of the most valuable tools that they give us to communicate with other people, to study, work and even to consume products from the field of entertainment.

If not treated in time, both intellectual and emotional development are in danger, with self-esteem being one of the easy targets. Unfortunately, children can become very cruel in situations like this, which is why a patient with dysgraphia usually isolates himself from his classmates to avoid being hurt.

The concept of dyslexia is often confused with that of dysgraphia, since both represent a learning difficulty. However, there are clear differences, especially if we highlight that dysgraphia mainly affects writing while dyslexia affects reading. Other problems that the latter entails are difficulties in speaking, spelling, distinguishing certain sounds and associating them with letters or combining them to make words.