At what age does dyslexia become a problem?

Dyslexic children's difficulties may only become apparent when they begin to learn to read. However, many children show signs of dyslexia even before they learn to read. They may have had difficulty seeing the letters properly, pronouncing some words; they may be unusually clumsy, or have problems concentrating. There may also be dyslexia in the family. It is worth getting advice as early as possible if you suspect dyslexia, because the earlier they get help the better the outcome.

Schools of course place enormous emphasis on reading and writing skills, because 99% of modern jobs require fluent literacy. But this can make life very difficult for dyslexic children. English is a particularly difficult language to read, because of the many irregularities in its sound-spelling relationships (compare rough, bough, lough, through, though, cough). It has been estimated that as many as 20% of British adults may be functionally illiterate. In Italy, where the language is much more regular, and the education system depends less on written work and more on oral tests, dyslexia may be less frequently diagnosed.