A WORRYING survey conducted by Dyspraxia Foundation reveals the distressing impact the disorder can have on teenagers’ mental health.
Redditch resident and Dyspraxia Foundation Trustee Sally Payne said: “For this year’s awareness we have focused on the hidden mental health consequences of dyspraxia for teenagers.
“55 per cent said that dyspraxic teenagers aged 11-18 were frequently or nearly always anxious.
“That figure went up to 70 per cent for people over 25 years of age.”
The nationwide survey also found that 60% of parents felt strongly that their teenage son or daughter would not reach their academic potential because of poor awareness among teachers of the practical and emotional impact of dyspraxia.
Students are not receiving the recognition, help and support they need to achieve and feel successful at school according to the research.
A large 67 per cent of parents are worried that their teenager was social isolated and 43% described them as lonely.
Sophie Kayani, parent and Chair of the Dyspraxia Foundation said: “This survey has highlighted to us the very distressing impact on teenagers’ mental health.
“The transition to secondary school is a particularly challenging time for teenagers with dyspraxia as their support reduces, the social pressures to ‘fit in’ increase and coping strategies they used in primary school may no longer be effective.
““What we need is to raise awareness of dyspraxia and for community, mental health and education services to work together to develop support that can be provided early to stop mental health needs from escalating.”
Dyspraxia is a developmental disorder of the brain in childhood causing difficulty in activities requiring co-ordination and movement.
It also affects organisation, planning and time management, and can also affect speech.
Males are up to three times more likely to be affected than females and it can runs in families, affecting people of all ages.
Visit www.dyspraxiafoundation.org.uk for more information about the charity and the work they do.