Developmental Dyspraxia

"Developmental dyspraxia is thought to affect around 6% of the population"

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Developmental Dyspraxia

Developmental dyspraxia is an impairment of co-ordination that affects the planning, organization and execution of movements. Dyspraxia may affect fine or gross motor skills or both. Developmental dyspraxia is differentiated from other forms of dyspraxia which develop as a result of illness or injury. Other names for this condition include Motor Learning Difficulty and Perceptuo-motor dysfunction. Sometimes co-existing with other conditions such as dyslexia, dyscalculia and Asperger syndrome, dyspraxia is nevertheless identified as a separate condition in its own right.

Developmental dyspraxia is thought to affect around 6% of the population, although it affects only 2% of the population severely. Males are more likely to be affected than females by a ratio of 4:1. There is relatively little research into the causes of dyspraxia (especially in comparison to what is known about other conditions, such as dyslexia.) Immaturity of neurone development in the brain is thought to be a possible cause. Developmental dyspraxia isn't curable, but individuals with the condition can be helped to use strategies to reduce and manage the impact of the disorder upon their lives.

 The condition, developmental dyspraxia is sometimes described as having two key elements:

> Ideaional dyspraxia, which relates to difficulties experienced when planning a sequence of coordinated movements.

> Ideo-Motor dyspraxia, which relates to the execution of a planned sequence of movements.

 If a parent is concerned that their child may have dyspraxia, it is always best to consult with the child's GP. The school Special Educational Needs Coordinator will also be a source of very valuable information. Schools work with a range of outside agencies which, once a diagnosis is given, will be able to provide help and therapy to help the child manage his or her condition and to develop the skills which he or she is finding hard to learn.

 Developmental dyspraxia affects both fine and gross motor skills, short-term memory function and speech and language. However, it is important to remember that difficulties affect individuals in different ways and to varying degrees. Another feature of the condition is the way in which individuals are often affected to differing degrees, at different times - able to perform a certain task on one day, but unable to do so on the next day.

Click here for a list of the signs and symptoms of dyspraxia

Support Group

Click here to go to the website of the Dyspraxia Foundation