Could I have Dyspraxia?

Getting assessed for your dyspraxia, getting help, disability allowance etc.

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Ambrer
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Could I have Dyspraxia?

Postby Ambrer » Wed May 10, 2017 8:02 pm

Hello! I was wondering if I could reach out and ask for some opinions for people who...sort of understand. I was considering going for a rest for dyspraxia, but I was...worried about wasting the GP's time.

A little bit of background - I'm a 20 year old female from the UK, suffering from two anxiety disorders for around 5 years now. These are Social and a Generalised Anxiety Disorders. I was also born at 27 weeks, so I was extremely premature - according to the NHS that could or could not play a factor, but I wanted to add that in just in case it's useful! I'm currently in my first year degree of Zoololgy. My Mum wants me to go for a test, as she stumbled on the dyspraxia foundation site last night and made the sudden connection that it makes sense.

As a kid, I was always clumsy - I'd get my face broken multiple times for failure to catch balls and even now, I still walk into doors! I also tend to use both of my hands for things, I can never decide which hand I want to use. I also have raynaud's syndrome, but I struggle to do things like put my own hair up into a ponytail. However, I can drive (got my license two years ago now) so it doesn't seem I have too many of the motor symptoms. It's when getting into the mental side of things that the dots begin to line up.

My speech and language is absolutely terrible. Typing like this is one thing, as I have plenty of time to think my words (spellcheck also helps!) but when I'm trying to talk to people, it all goes a little pear shaped. I have the tendency to interrupt a lot without meaning too - like I hear others, but then forgetting they're in the middle of a conversation. I am pretty loud when I talk and I struggle to get the correct words out, I repeat myself and stumble a lot, as well as problems with my pronunciation. I have a slight lisp (l's and y's tend to be mixed) and I really struggle with the pronunciation of many words. Reading is..difficult. It's painfully slow, I tend to skim-read (revising is awful) and then if I try and read the words back, I find I struggle in order to read the word and then pronounce it correctly. Mum and Dad are also constantly telling me off for having a high pitched, uncontrolled tone of voice when I'm frustrated or trying to get my point across.

Eye movements are fine - they have to be, in order to be able to drive! ;)

Perception is also an issue - I have absolutely no spacial awareness and often bump into things - mainly people or smashing into doors on my way out, or scraping along walls at work when I think I'm clear of them. Apparently not! I'm always bashing into one thing or another, but that's about it for perception side.

Finally, another big part as to why I want to be tested is all to do with the thought, memory, and emotions. I struggle to revise and learn anything unless it's animated, I'm a very visual learner. I'm always getting distracted and struggle to keep my attention on my work - I'm an absolute dreamer and much rather would be drawing, watching anime or video games! Accuracy is a massive problem, especially on the reading and pronunciation of words, but upon further inspection my spelling isn't that fantastic, either! Emotions are difficult - I struggle at university and work to make friends, I never know what to say and have to physically rehearse orders and phone calls! I've got a habit of avoiding situations that make me uncomfortable and tend to mainly stick to myself, especially as it's difficult to find people with my interests. Parents call me impulsive all the time! And they're always moaning about how I'm erratic and have good and bad days. At work I also struggle as I fail to read people's sign, tone of language, and body language effectively - I always take things too literally and will get upset as I feel it's a attack on myself, though that may be the anxiety talking.

I'm just really unsure to go for a test - parents are encouraging it as it would make a lot of sense, I'm just really worried it's a waste of time for everyone involved. I just don't know if I'm overthinking this and it could be something completely different, you know? I'm super sorry about how long this got and thank you for reading!

Ram
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Re: Could I have Dyspraxia?

Postby Ram » Wed May 10, 2017 8:20 pm

Ambrer wrote:Hello! I was wondering if I could reach out and ask for some opinions for people who...sort of understand. I was considering going for a rest for dyspraxia, but I was...worried about wasting the GP's time.

A little bit of background - I'm a 20 year old female from the UK, suffering from two anxiety disorders for around 5 years now. These are Social and a Generalised Anxiety Disorders. I was also born at 27 weeks, so I was extremely premature - according to the NHS that could or could not play a factor, but I wanted to add that in just in case it's useful! I'm currently in my first year degree of Zoololgy. My Mum wants me to go for a test, as she stumbled on the dyspraxia foundation site last night and made the sudden connection that it makes sense.

As a kid, I was always clumsy - I'd get my face broken multiple times for failure to catch balls and even now, I still walk into doors! I also tend to use both of my hands for things, I can never decide which hand I want to use. I also have raynaud's syndrome, but I struggle to do things like put my own hair up into a ponytail. However, I can drive (got my license two years ago now) so it doesn't seem I have too many of the motor symptoms. It's when getting into the mental side of things that the dots begin to line up.

My speech and language is absolutely terrible. Typing like this is one thing, as I have plenty of time to think my words (spellcheck also helps!) but when I'm trying to talk to people, it all goes a little pear shaped. I have the tendency to interrupt a lot without meaning too - like I hear others, but then forgetting they're in the middle of a conversation. I am pretty loud when I talk and I struggle to get the correct words out, I repeat myself and stumble a lot, as well as problems with my pronunciation. I have a slight lisp (l's and y's tend to be mixed) and I really struggle with the pronunciation of many words. Reading is..difficult. It's painfully slow, I tend to skim-read (revising is awful) and then if I try and read the words back, I find I struggle in order to read the word and then pronounce it correctly. Mum and Dad are also constantly telling me off for having a high pitched, uncontrolled tone of voice when I'm frustrated or trying to get my point across.

Eye movements are fine - they have to be, in order to be able to drive! ;)

Perception is also an issue - I have absolutely no spacial awareness and often bump into things - mainly people or smashing into doors on my way out, or scraping along walls at work when I think I'm clear of them. Apparently not! I'm always bashing into one thing or another, but that's about it for perception side.

Finally, another big part as to why I want to be tested is all to do with the thought, memory, and emotions. I struggle to revise and learn anything unless it's animated, I'm a very visual learner. I'm always getting distracted and struggle to keep my attention on my work - I'm an absolute dreamer and much rather would be drawing, watching anime or video games! Accuracy is a massive problem, especially on the reading and pronunciation of words, but upon further inspection my spelling isn't that fantastic, either! Emotions are difficult - I struggle at university and work to make friends, I never know what to say and have to physically rehearse orders and phone calls! I've got a habit of avoiding situations that make me uncomfortable and tend to mainly stick to myself, especially as it's difficult to find people with my interests. Parents call me impulsive all the time! And they're always moaning about how I'm erratic and have good and bad days. At work I also struggle as I fail to read people's sign, tone of language, and body language effectively - I always take things too literally and will get upset as I feel it's a attack on myself, though that may be the anxiety talking.

I'm just really unsure to go for a test - parents are encouraging it as it would make a lot of sense, I'm just really worried it's a waste of time for everyone involved. I just don't know if I'm overthinking this and it could be something completely different, you know? I'm super sorry about how long this got and thank you for reading!


In my highly unqualified opinion, it does sound as if you have a lot of dyspraxic symptoms. I personally would say it is worthwhile to go for the assessment.

If you are diagnosed as dyspraxic, three benefits come to mind.
1. Your parents might give you a less of a hard time about some of your (probably) dyspraxic traits.
2. You may get some concessions from your university if you have a professional diagnosis. This may prove extremely useful to you later on in the course when things start to get tougher.
3. It increases your self-knowledge. I'll leave you with this quote on self-knowledge from the author Meg Rosoff.

"Self-knowledge is essential not only to writing, but to doing almost anything really well. It allows you to work through from a deep place - from the deep, dark corners of your subconscious mind. "

Ambrer
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Re: Could I have Dyspraxia?

Postby Ambrer » Wed May 10, 2017 8:28 pm

Thank you so much for a fast and reassuring response! I know it's a good idea to go for the test....is it just the case of asking my GP? Very nervous to begin the process, especially at my age - been researching and some sites are saying it's difficult to diagnose in adults?

Tom fod
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Re: Could I have Dyspraxia?

Postby Tom fod » Wed May 10, 2017 11:58 pm

Hi Ambrer and welcome

GP awareness and resources provision for adult diagnosis is patchy and a bit of a lottery. Do check out responses to similar questions on the forum and go armed with info and examples when you visit your GP. Since you're at University it may be worth speaking to Disability/Welfare services people at your college too.

We're all unique individuals and won't tick all the boxes on any symptoms of dyspraxia list.The emotional effects of the condition badly affect self esteem so we generally feel bad about seeking an opinion that will better enable us to understand and accept ourselves.

Please do feel free to post any further questions that might occur to you.

All the best
Tom
Moderator/Administrator

With a foot full of bullets I tried to run faster but I just hobbled on to the next disaster.
(from Peter and the Test Tube Babies, Foot Full of Bullets)

Ambrer
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Joined: Wed May 10, 2017 7:40 pm

Re: Could I have Dyspraxia?

Postby Ambrer » Thu May 11, 2017 11:26 am

Tom fod wrote:Hi Ambrer and welcome

GP awareness and resources provision for adult diagnosis is patchy and a bit of a lottery. Do check out responses to similar questions on the forum and go armed with info and examples when you visit your GP. Since you're at University it may be worth speaking to Disability/Welfare services people at your college too.

We're all unique individuals and won't tick all the boxes on any symptoms of dyspraxia list.The emotional effects of the condition badly affect self esteem so we generally feel bad about seeking an opinion that will better enable us to understand and accept ourselves.

Please do feel free to post any further questions that might occur to you.

All the best


That's probably a good idea - taking a massive list of examples with me. I've begun to write it all down.

Don't get me wrong - I'm really scared to waste everyone's time and I'm also frightened to go in for this test. I probably wouldn't go if my parents wasn't pushing it so much. I'm just frightened to be labelled with a condition like this, but it does make sense - but if I don't have anything, I don't want to make a mountain out of a molehill and waste time, you know? The other problem is finding a GP that will take me seriously. Most doctors shrug off my anxiety disorders and like to get me out of the office asap.

I've been researching - it seems like I'll need to pay £500 plus for a test - is that correct, or is it a lottery like you said? I suppose it depends on the GP, too...

Been in contact with the welfare people at University currently - been arranged for some CBT for the anxiety, anyway.

Tom fod
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Re: Could I have Dyspraxia?

Postby Tom fod » Thu May 11, 2017 10:27 pm

Hi again

There's no 'it's probably a good idea' about it is is fine, fantastic and imperative 8-)

Seriously speaking, it's of paramount importance that you make/own the ultimate decision on whether or not to be tested yourself.

The label is yours, you don't have to wear it in public or tell everyone. I only reveal to those who I trust and where their knowing will be helpful/beneficial to me. I too was extremely fearful about the whole label thing but Dyspraxia is only a part of my whole and I do not consider myself defined by the label. You've evaded diagnosis/assessment for 20 years which at least says something for your coping/avoidance strategies.I suspect in many ways you are your own harshest critic? On a good day I guess I'd say I have Dyspraxic Tendencies on my bad I'm more useless (beware relative term!)

I suggested your University student support services since they may be in a position to offer a better/easier route to obtaining an assessment and they may be able to fully fund or possibly offer assessment at a reduced cost and/or advise of bursaries that might be available to meet the cost. I personally would never have considered committing £500 of my money to paying for my own assessment. Though there is a good argument for wanting to know for certain as knowledge is power and it is helpful to some as with confirmation from a professional one can then start to move fowards and become more accepting of why some things are just more difficult. I believe the WAIS test is typically used.

Re the GP approach
I really appreciate it's easier said than done but try to distill the list down as much as possible as assuming you'll only have around 10 mins with the GP? I'd first ask what (s)he knows about dyspraxia is and if it is mentioned in your medical notes. If he's is unfamiliar have some info (s)he can look at giving examples of the day to difficulties/challenges you have and their impact on your life/study. (It's probably best to give the worst day example though I think we're all programmed to downplay it a little too much. It's your GP's job to try to help you have a tolerable life whereby you can achieve your true potential rather than suffer miserably. Your GP may well first refer you to a neurologist, though an OT is a possibility. Being patient polite and persistent is likely to be important his/her finding the most useful fit for you in the maze of NHS services is reportedly a bit of a black art.. You may also want to call the Dyspraxia Foundation's helpline or consult their website for tips.

On CBT
I was really struggling with life and job a bit prior to learning about me having this dyspraxia thing. I found that CBT really helped me at the time, though I did start out quite sceptical. it helps to be open minded about it One of the most helpful things a friend said to me was does it change who you are?

Hoping this is helpful to your own decision making. Please do ask me if you need me to clarify anything or you believe I have completely the wrong end of the stick with anything I've drivelled on about above 8-)
Tom
Moderator/Administrator

With a foot full of bullets I tried to run faster but I just hobbled on to the next disaster.
(from Peter and the Test Tube Babies, Foot Full of Bullets)

Ambrer
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Re: Could I have Dyspraxia?

Postby Ambrer » Mon Jun 05, 2017 8:34 am

Hello,

Just a small update that I've made an appointment to go and see the GP today. I'm not sure how it'll go, since I'm having to see a temporary GP at home while University has finished. I was just waiting for my exams to be over before I started the process, you know?

I was thinking about it for the longest time, discussing it with my parents - Mum thinks I should go for it, Dad says and I quote "You think you have everything!" But I feel like I should go. Even if it's negative, it'll still give me the piece of mind. And as you guys kindly said about a month ago, knowledge is power!

I'm just very frightened. After all, it's something...big. And I'm not sure what it will mean for my career choices if I do end up being diagnosed; and I'm also scared people will start treating me differently. But I also know this will continue to eat me up until I go for the assessment!

Fingers crossed the GP takes me seriously and doesn't just blow me off since I'm a adult. I contacted the Dyspraxia Foundation and they were brilliant, gave me a lot of resources and a run-down of what to do in order to hopefully get tested as an adult.

Will update later today once I've had the appointment. :)

Tom fod
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Re: Could I have Dyspraxia?

Postby Tom fod » Tue Jun 06, 2017 12:37 am

Hi I hope your appointment went well.
Remember any diagnosis is yours to own and share that fact as appropriate. The road to acceptance is rarely an easy one and I and probably many others here experienced similar fears upon learning we had this condition and the 'What Now?' question is not one that people know how to answer easily.

Please do keep us up to date. We're here to try to answer any questions you have and offer understanding to help you come to terms with the result whatever it is.

All the best.
Last edited by Tom fod on Tue Jun 06, 2017 12:40 am, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: spotted errors as soon as I'd hit submit surprise!
Tom
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With a foot full of bullets I tried to run faster but I just hobbled on to the next disaster.
(from Peter and the Test Tube Babies, Foot Full of Bullets)


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