Learning and thinking differences are lifelong challenges that impact skills like reading, writing, math, and focus. They’re caused by differences in how the brain processes information.
Some learning and thinking differences are learning disabilities like dyslexia. Others are difficulties with important skills people use for learning, for working, and in everyday living.
For the nearly 70 million people who have them, these differences can make school, work, and everyday life hard. But there are many supports that can help kids, young adults, and adults who think and learn differently thrive.
Types of learning and thinking differences
Dyslexia and ADHD are the most common and well-known differences. You probably know someone who has one or both — or maybe you have them yourself. ADHD, for example, is the most common condition in childhood. And an estimated 5 to 10 percent of people have dyslexia.
But there are other challenges you may not have heard of. For instance, dyscalculia is a learning disability in math. Experts think it’s as common as dyslexia.
Other challenges include:
- Language disorders, like receptive language disorder and expressive language disorder
- Written expression disorder
- Trouble with executive function
- Slow processing speed
- Sensory processing issues
Many people who learn and think differently struggle in more than one area. That’s because some conditions often occur together.
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