Helping A Family Understand The Common Types Of Learning Disabilities

Unfortunately, learning disabilities are pretty common. In the United States alone, about 15% of individuals struggle with some of a diagnosable form of learning disability. There are different types of learning disabilities. Some are easy to recognize, while others tend to be complicated. These complicated ones often confuse parents because of the various terms that are thrown around the condition. But with regard to the general public’s situation, there are three officially and commonly recognized learning disabilities. Let’s take a look at those.


Reading Disability

One of the three common disabilities that the majority of people encounter is the reading disability or also known as a reading disorder. Sometimes, it gets categorized as dyslexia, depending on the particular present characteristics that individuals have. It is a condition where individuals have difficulty learning numbers and letters. Sometimes, it gets associated with the difficulty in learning letter and its sound correspondence. An example of this is when individuals know what a particular letter is, but happen to pronounce it in a different sound. Also, another part of the reading disability is the blending of sounds. It connects to the possible problem of the brain, specifically the phonological memory. It is the process of the mind that stores sound information.

As you can see, reading disability is a condition related to the slow process of the brain. It is a mental development issue that leads to problems reading, not just a single word, but almost all of it. That is because individuals with a reading disability do not have automatic processing that typical readers have. It tends to extend into cognitive issues such as damaged reading comprehension. It can result in individuals not understanding thoughts and ideas from paragraphs and full sentences. It becomes impossible for people to get through different texts, put every word together, and derive meaning.


Math Learning Disability

A math learning disability, also known as dyscalculia and math dyslexia, relates to the difficulty processing numerical information. Usually, people look at is as a normal thing. There is an assumption that individuals struggling with math only need time and more practice to progress. However, math disability is not just about a slow process of numbers but also the difficulty of learning mathematical facts. Individuals with this disability are often weak in mental arithmetic skills, slow in performing basic calculations, struggle in fixing vital analytical concepts, and suffer from a poor sense of estimations.

For people with a math disability, addition is their default operation. They have difficulty counting numbers backward, and they do not understand place values. Usually, the symptoms become noticeable when individuals find it mentally and emotionally exhausting to understand different kinds of number-related problems. They experience high levels of mathematical stress, which leads to other mental health issues such as depression and anxiety. Unfortunately, there is no solution for this condition. Math learning disability is not a phase that people can outgrow.


Writing Disability

Writing disability is also one of the common disabilities that the majority of people encounter. It is known as a disorder of written expression and sometimes called dysgraphia. Though it is often known to many as a mild category, writing disability has quite a bit of variability. One is the difficulty with the act of writing. It is where individuals find it hard to make necessary writing hand strokes and movements. It often relates to those people who either cannot seem to write in bold or cursive letters. Also, individuals with this disability struggle with forming numbers and letters.

But in general, writing disability is the individuals’ incompetency to get their thoughts down on paper. As it progresses, it becomes a whole different level of struggle in understanding the mechanics of writing, such as spelling, punctuation, and capitalization. Another thing that associates with the disability is the problem with content writing. Unfortunately, individuals with this type of disability who might have thoughts and ideas in their brains find it difficult to organize words. And as the condition worsens, these people are unable to express themselves better in written and oral communication.



These three types of disability might seem to be the most common ones, but there are also other learning disabilities that the family should take note of. These are not necessarily classified formally, but the individuals, particularly children, usually have it. Families should watch out for executive malfunction. These difficulties affect individuals’ functions such as arithmetic abilities, gross motor skills, visual-spatial skills, and global processing of information. Also, it is a category of disability where individuals struggle with the set of skills that involve generating strategies to solve problems, make decisions, and create better judgments. Executive malfunction also affects impulse control and emotional and behavioral regulation. People suffer from this type of difficulty for many different reasons. And though it is not formally classified, it certainly affects individuals’ ability to learn.