The quick answer to the question, “Can dyslexia be reversed?” is YES. With neuroscience and good nutrition, reversing dyslexia is possible for many who are affected. To understand how dyslexia occurs, it’s helpful to understand the brain and how it develops.
There is a natural, inherent order in the development of the brain, and when the brain doesn’t develop in the proper order, learning difficulties such as dyslexia occur. If we understand that natural order of development and work within its parameters, we can truly heal ourselves.
To do this, we need to look deeper and in a different place than where most experts focus attention. Most dyslexia specialists are concerned with higher brain functions, but to heal dyslexia, we need to look at what makes you complete as a human being. We must address all components of the brain, not just the “thinking brain,” or neo-cortex.
Not understanding the entire brain prevents other experts from realizing that reversing dyslexia is possible. It can happen for the majority of children, teens, and adults with dyslexia, without drugs or invasive treatments.
The reptilian brain
The core difference between other experts’ approaches and ours concerns that part of the brain known as the “reptilian” or basic brain, which plays a fundamental role in safety, survival, and the ability to learn. Most other experts do not understand the relationship between the reptilian brain and the emotional brain (or limbic system), which is involved in care and bonding. We use that understanding in an integrative approach to bring out the very best chances for your child’s success. We focus on the total brain and its development, not just on one piece of the brain puzzle.
Perhaps because of the unappealing term “reptilian brain,” experts in the field of learning disabilities seem to prefer to ignore this hugely important part of our brain’s development. But the reptilian brain is not in any way non-human; it is a part of the brain that has a critical contribution to make in ensuring we become the most complete, fulfilled humans we are meant to be.
Each developmental stage sets the foundation for the next
Think of it this way. Corn doesn’t just show up on the grocery shelf. It grew in a field with the right nutrients and was allowed to mature before harvesting. So it is with your child: harvesting your child’s genius doesn’t come without proper care and feeding. This includes ensuring that each stage of the brain’s development occurs in the correct sequence and is fully integrated so each new set of functions can build on that foundation.
Children must go through each stage in turn and stay in that stage for the necessary time to allow the development to fully take place. While parents are often proud that their children only crawled for a few weeks before pulling themselves up to walk, we often see those children having vision and learning problems later because they didn’t reap all the benefits of that stage of development. Fortunately, damage done can be reversed.
Why your child can’t learn when he or she is scared
Now that you know insufficient development plays a role in the onset of learning difficulties, it’s time to dive into reversing dyslexia. The thing to remember is that the reptilian brain is concerned with survival. When kids are asked to do something that they don’t do well, such as read or write, they may react in several ways: become withdrawn; sit still (fight-flight-freeze system); breathe shallowly; or, when backed against the wall, fight back, such as saying something to the teacher that warrants being sent to the principal’s office.
When a child (or adult) enters fight-flight-freeze, the reptilian brain shuts down some or all of the channels connecting the limbic system and neo-cortex, preventing normal emotional functioning and access to the higher cognitive processes involved in learning. Our modern day stress can mimic actual life and death to parts of the brain. That person is literally fighting for survival, and many experts, because their focus is on other parts of the brain, do not understand this crucial piece.
Why other approaches don’t work
There are numerous approaches to improving dyslexia for children: vision therapy conducted by optometrists; sensory integration done by occupational therapists; physical therapy; speech therapy; behavioral therapy; cranial sacral therapy; neurofeedback performed by psychologists; tutoring in specific subjects such as math and language arts; and computerized programs that deal with reading and ear training.
All of these approaches address just one specific input channel—the ear, eyes, mouth, or body. What they fail to do is integrate the whole. Moreover, they ignore or gloss over the key reason why learning is difficult or nearly impossible for dyslexic kids. The reason is that kids are still dealing with survival or fight-flight-freeze responses that are housed in the part of the brain that develops the earliest—the reptilian brain. This means most approaches to remediating dyslexia are similar to putting a band-aid on a gaping, bleeding wound.
So most traditional approaches to treating dyslexia don’t work, or work only temporarily. The good news is the brain is not only changeable in extreme conditions, but this plasticity is available with every thought you think and every experience you have.
Reversing dyslexia naturally
When you bring your child in to us, we follow a protocol for reversing dyslexia:
- Your child is tested and treated for neurological, emotional, and chemical factors that are contributing to the diagnosis of dyslexia. All parts of the brain involved in movement and learning are addressed to build a strong foundation for good internal communication.
- Your child is treated each session in a sequential series of corrections by pre- and post-testing each portion of the protocol for the structural and neurological issues. Some emotional issues can be addressed in the office, and you will be referred for appropriate counseling therapy for others.
- Your child’s chemical needs are assessed in the beginning of care and again at periodic intervals for progress. In addition to neurotransmitter testing, heavy metal testing, allergy testing and nutritional suggestions, allergy desensitization, and nutritional issues may be part of regular sessions. At least 40% of the children I see have allergies.
- When your child’s body finally recognizes what normal is, it wants to stay there. Once the re-wiring and upgrading of all the foundational systems are in place, the good news is that the changes hold indefinitely. In 1996, after doing this work for ten years, I sent out questionnaires to former clients. Over 85% reported the changes were still holding after the initial two to three months of care.
Dyslexia doesn’t have to be forever. Combining neuroscience and nutrition results in a dramatic reversal of dyslexia and increased self-esteem, greater confidence, better grades, less stress, and a happier life for everyone. While these dyslexia-defeating techniques are certainly not mainstream, they work.