What is dyspraxia and how can it be diagnosed?

What is dyspraxia and how can it be diagnosed?

Could your child have dyspraxia (developmental co-ordination disorder)?

 What is dyspraxia and how can it be diagnosed 1

One of my four-year-old’s nursery teachers told me he struggles to hold a crayon and is very clumsy, so they think he may be dyspraxic. Can you explain this a bit more, and whether you think it’s likely?

It is virtually impossible to comment on this without seeing your child, and it’s really not wise even for a nursery worker to make a remark like this as conditions such as dyslexia and dyspraxia require a full assessment and proper diagnosis by an educational psychologist.

Dyspraxia – these days more commonly called developmental co-ordination disorder (DCD) when in young children – is a problem with co-ordination; but it’s very difficult to diagnose under the age of five or six, as many motor skills and other abilities are not yet fully developed.

Many four-year-olds still seem quite clumsy and have difficulty holding pens, so this seems a very premature remark. It would not be wise to label your son in this way while he is still acquiring skills and also needing to develop confidence in his own abilities.

Eileen Hayes

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