Dyslexia is a learning disorder I was introduced to when I was a child after I’m sure many of us students saw a commercial on Disney Channel about Bella Thorne, speaking out about her experience with it. I always thought of it as something that was just related to reading difficulties but I read Anna Nowogrodzki’s article “Dyslexia Doesn’t Work the Way We Thought It Did” and learned it is way more than that. Studies show it’s the quick loss of recent implicit memory that is holding the brain back. This is why dyslexics’ brains don’t adapt as much after reading or hearing something repeatedly as it is more difficult for their brains to process the words they read. Typically, our brains benefit from repetition because it relates a stimulus to what we have already heard but this is not the case for Dyslexics.
In the article, research was conducted at a University where the researchers played two different notes and asked participants which was higher. “Previous research has found that people do better on this task when one of the notes is a repeat of a note they’ve heard recently. But Ahissar found that people with dyslexia did not benefit as much from the repetition. When a tone was repeated only three seconds after the “anchor” tone, they got some benefit, but not after nine seconds had elapsed. And when Ahissar’s team measured dyslexic people’s brain responses with EEG, their brain responses didn’t decrease. Their brains didn’t get any more efficient—they were less adaptable”. Similar studies also aligned with these results where dyslexic brains were less adaptable to a repeated stimulus.
It is interesting that Dyslexia is mainly associated with reading when it affects other types of memories. I received clarity through the text “Perhaps people with dyslexia are better at compensating for the memory gap for recognizing faces and spoken words because the brain has more alternate pathways for these processes than it does for reading”. Reading has always been more of a difficult task as humans respond better with imagery. This reading helped me gain a better understanding of Dyslexia.
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Hi Faizeh! It was interesting to find out that you were also introduced to dyslexia through Bella Thorne and her interview on the Disney Channel. This just goes to show how representation is so important so that people can become more aware of underrepresented voices. I was also uneducated in the sense that dyslexia deals with much more than words and letters since that seems to be the surface-level description of it. Reading your post inspires me to learn more about dyslexia as someone very special in my life deals with it.