Aleteia logoAleteia logo
Aleteia
Saturday 25 September |
Saint of the Day: Bl. Herman “the Cripple”
home iconLifestyle
line break icon

What causes dyslexia? The answer may lie in the eyes

letters alphabet

Hafiez Razal I Shutterstock

Sophia Swinford - published on 11/20/17

Scientists might have found the cause behind this common learning disability.

Despite the fact that between 5 and 10 percent of the population experiences dyslexia, very little is known about the causes of this condition. Some evidence has shown that people with dyslexia rely more heavily on one hemisphere of the brain than the other, but no exact cause has been established. But new research out of the University of Rennes may indicate an exciting new link between dyslexia and light receptors in the eyes.

Dyslexia is a learning difficulty that affects reading, writing, and spelling. This new research shows that people with dyslexia have a different pattern of cone cells, the cells in the eyes responsible for red, blue, and green light. In the majority of the population, the patterns in these cells are asymmetrical, which means light is not absorbed the same way in each eye. This ultimately causes the person to develop a “dominant” eye whose reception of light is favored over the non-dominant eye.

However, people with dyslexia don’t appear to have asymmetric arrangements; rather, they have symmetrical ones. This causes their brain to process some images as mirrored. For example, “b” and “d” would appear to be the same. Because the patterns of cone cells are the same in both eyes, the brain can’t distinguish between which reception of light is more accurate.

The scientists also discovered that invisible flashing light from an LED lamp helped erase one mirror image, allowing the individual with dyslexia to see the letters properly. However, the team was unable to distinguish whether these symmetrical patterns were the direct cause of dyslexia or the result of an underlying neurological issue.

Either way, these advances do not mean the end of dyslexia, but they are a great step moving forward! These discoveries could mean new interventions for young people and will hopefully lead to new ways to help those with learning difficulties achieve their full potential.




Read more:
How Training the Brain Helps Heal Dyslexia, Autism, and ADHD




Read more:
These fonts for dyslexics may make reading easier

Tags:
DisabilitiesEducationScience
Support Aleteia!

If you’re reading this article, it’s thanks to the generosity of people like you, who have made Aleteia possible.

Here are some numbers:

  • 20 million users around the world read Aleteia.org every month
  • Aleteia is published every day in seven languages: English, French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, and Slovenian
  • Each month, readers view more than 50 million pages
  • Nearly 4 million people follow Aleteia on social media
  • Each month, we publish 2,450 articles and around 40 videos
  • We have 60 full time staff and approximately 400 collaborators (writers, translators, photographers, etc.)

As you can imagine, these numbers represent a lot of work. We need you.

Support Aleteia with as little as $1. It only takes a minute. Thank you!

Daily prayer
And today we celebrate...




Top 10
1
SLEEPING
Cecilia Pigg
7 Ways the saints can help you sleep better at night
2
VATICAN LEGOS
J-P Mauro
Chicago architect models Vatican City from 67,000 LEGO bricks
3
Tolkien
Philip Kosloski
Why J.R.R. Tolkien loved to attend daily Mass
4
OUR LADY
Philip Kosloski
An alternative Hail Mary to Our Lady of Sorrows
5
PADRE PIO
Bret Thoman, OFS
Exclusive photos: Meet Padre Pio and the place he lived
6
PADRE PIO
Philip Kosloski
How Our Lady saved Padre Pio from a violent demonic attack
7
peace
Cerith Gardiner
9 Padre Pio quotes for when you’re feeling scared or uncertain
See More
Newsletter
Get Aleteia delivered to your inbox. Subscribe here.