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Could He Have Dyslexia?

Surprisingly, you may be able to detect signs of dyslexia well before your child goes to school from the way he talks:

* Does he have trouble learning nursery rhymes or grasping the rhyme?
* Does he mispronounce sounds consistently or use a lot of baby talk?
* Does he often use the wrong word, even if he knows the right one, such as "escalator" instead of "elevator"?
* Does he have a hard time learning and remembering the names of letters (as he gets closer to 5)?
* Did he have a delay in speaking?

If you answer yes to several of these, or if someone else in your family has dyslexia, have your child evaluated by a speech and language pathologist.

The good news: Preschoolers at risk for dyslexia often show an excellent understanding of narrative and may have a strong vocabulary and sharp analytical skills, says Sally Shaywitz, M.D., author of Overcoming Dyslexia. By focusing on these things, Dr. Shaywitz says, you can help make sure your child's strengths  -- not his weaknesses  -- are what define him.

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