What Is Hyperlexia?
Hyperlexia is when a child starts reading before they should and faster than they should be able to. It often goes along with a fixation on letters and numbers. Hyperlexia is often a part of autism spectrum disorder, but not always (ASD).
Is hyperlexia common in autism?
Children with autism spectrum disorder are most likely to have it (ASD). Between 2% and 20% of children with autism have hyperlexia.
In the research, there is a lot of disagreement about whether or not these children learn to read like their older peers who are developing normally. The results of a study at McGill showed that children with autism and hyperlexia seem to go their own way. This path moves toward literacy instead of building literacy skills in the same way that reading does for typically developing children.
What level of autism is hyperlexia?
Hyperlexia 1 isn't very common, but it's diagnosed when normal (or "neurotypical," as it's called now) children read early. They may be able to read at a seventh-grade level when they start kindergarten.
When a child is on the autism spectrum, they have Hyperlexia 2. They can't stop putting letters and numbers in order, and instead of toys or stuffed animals, they would rather take alphabet or number based toys to bed. They are also obsessed with remembering things like license plate numbers, birthdays, the solar system, and trip directions like you would get from a GPS. They also show other signs of autism, like withdrawing and being alone, avoiding eye contact, and not wanting to give or get affection. They are often too sensitive to sounds or other things that are too much for them. They, too, read early, which was way ahead of what was expected.
Hyperlexia 3 happens when a child learns to read early and has "autism-like" symptoms for a while. Unlike children on the autism spectrum, these symptoms go away over time. Often, they remember a lot about music or movies. Reading comprehension is quite good, but verbal language can take a while to catch up. In contrast to children on the spectrum, they make good eye contact, seek and give affection, and are comfortable in social situations, especially with adults.
Do hyperlexic kids understand what they read?
A child with hyperlexia might learn how to decode or sound out words very quickly, but they might not understand most of what they are reading.
A child with hyperlexia, unlike a child who is a gifted reader, can have communication or speaking skills that are below their age level. Some kids are hyperlexic in more than one language, but their communication skills are below average.
Can you be hyperlexic and not autistic?
Many books, articles, and websites say that hyperlexia is always a sign or symptom of autism or another developmental disorder. However, our research and the research of others show that this is not always the case.
Is hyperlexia a disability?
Hyperlexia is a super ability that some people with developmental disorders have, and not a ability that some people in the general population have. It is defined by unexpected single-word reading in the context of otherwise suppressed intellectual functioning (defined through a discrepancy between levels of single-word reading and comprehension). But at the same time, we argue that studying the phenomenon of hyperlexia, which is defined within the research framework of understanding single-word reading, from different angles and using different methods is important and necessary.
Is hyperlexia genetic?
It is thought that hyperlexia may be present where several genetically linked developmental disorders come together.
Is hyperlexia a neurological disorder?
Hyperlexia is when a person has better reading skills than comprehension skills or general intelligence, learns to read early without being taught, and has a strong interest in written material. This usually happens in people with a neurodevelopmental disorder.
How do you overcome hyperlexia?
Children with hyperlexia 2 or 3 have been said to benefit most from three types of help. Some of these are occupational therapy and speech and language therapy. The key to success is a good treatment plan that uses the child's strengths and interests to help with areas where they are weak. Therapists who are open-minded, willing to use the child's goals and curriculum, and able to solve problems in a creative and collaborative way are best suited to help these kids. It is very important to find the right people to carry out the child's treatment plan.
Using written language can help the child learn the skills they need. This is the most important thing to remember. When you're not sure, write it down. This gives the child more power because it gives them more confidence and less stress because they stay in their comfort zone while they are learning.