About the speaker: Dr Helen Likierman is a consultant clinical psychologist working with families and children where there are emotional, social, behavioural or learning concerns. Visit Helen's website at www.psykidz.co.uk.
Further information about this Talk
Visit Helen's website at www.psykidz.co.uk.
To get hold of Valerie Muter's and Helen Likierman's latest book on how parents can help with dyslexia, dyspraxia and related learning difficulties please click here.
Key Points Covered in This Talk:
- What is dyspraxia? A problem of poor motor coordination that is out of keeping with a child's other abilities and possibly their age as well. The problems are such that they will interfere with the child's academic progress (e.g. handwriting) or with their daily life (e.g. dressing).
- Commonly asked questions about dyspraxia:
- Are children with dyspraxia more likely to have attention problems? Many children with dyspraxia have attention problems. Half have some form of problem and one fifth have ADHD coinciding with dyspraxia as well. The term DAMP (deficit of attention and motor perception) has been used to describe this co-occurrence.
- Can dyspraxia easily be spotted in pre-schoolers? Dyspraxia is extremely difficult to spot in pre-schoolers because some children's nervous systems mature more slowly than others, therefore it is hard to tell if the problem is due to immaturity or an underlying problem that will not go away (dyspraxia). Also, some children don't have the opportunity to practice some of the fine motor skills (such as fastening their coat, painting, handling cutlery) because parents do it for them. Lots of young children may seem clumsy when they are young for perfectly normal reasons.
- Is dyspraxia usually outgrown by adolescence? Dyspraxia is not outgrown by adolescence. The pattern may change but children will continue to have problems and other problems will resurface as the complexities of what they are asked at school increase.
- Are there few effective treatments for dyspraxia? There are very few effective treatments because there is not a clear-cut underlying problem. Also dyspraxic children can show very widely differing sets of problems and difficulties. For instance, some children may have problems with fine motor control (e.g. handwriting) but have good gross motor control (e.g. sports). Many children have problems with visio-spatial difficulties but not all children have this kind of problem.