WHAT IS DYSPRAXIA?

Dyspraxia affects fine and/or gross motor coordination in children and adults. People with dyspraxia have trouble planning and completing fine motor tasks. This can vary from simple motor tasks such as waving goodbye to more complex tasks like brushing teeth.

It is also known to affect planning of movements and co-ordination as a result of brain messages not being accurately transmitted to the body.

A child may have simple problems like using a knife and fork, fastening buttons, opening jars and packets etc.

Warning Signs of Dyspraxia

  • Very high levels of motor activity, including feet swinging and tapping when seated, hand-clapping or twisting. Unable to stay still
  • High levels of excitability, with a loud/shrill voice
  • May be easily distressed and prone to temper tantrums
  • May constantly bump into objects and fall over
  • Hands flap when running
  • The difficulty with pedalling a tricycle or similar toy
  • Lack of any sense of danger (jumping from heights etc)
  • Continued messy eating. May prefer to eat with their fingers, frequently spill drinks
  • Avoidance of constructional toys, such as jigsaws or building blocks
  • Poor fine motor skills. Difficulty in holding a pencil or using scissors. Drawings may appear immature
  • Lack of imaginative play
  • Limited creative play
  • Isolation within the peer group. Rejected by peers, children may prefer adult company
  • Laterality (left- or right-handedness) still not established
  • Persistent language difficulties
  • Sensitive to sensory stimulation, including high levels of noise, tactile defensiveness, wearing new clothes
  • Limited response to verbal instruction. Maybe slow to respond and have problems with comprehension
  • Limited concentration. Tasks are often left unfinished
  • Difficulties in adapting to a structured school routine
  • Difficulties in Physical Education lessons
  • Slow at dressing. Unable to tie shoelaces
  • Barely legible handwriting
  • Immature drawing and coping skills
  • Limited concentration and poor listening skills
  • Literal use of language
  • Inability to remember more than two or three instructions at once
  • Slow completion of class work
  • Continued high levels of motor activity
  • Hand flapping or clapping when excited
  • The tendency to become easily distressed and emotional
  • Problems with coordinating a knife and fork
  • Inability to form relationships with other children
  • Sleeping difficulties, including wakefulness at night and nightmares