A Full Guide To Dyscalculia Diagnosis And Treatment Options

Dyscalculia diagnosis and treatment options

Around 6% of people in the UK have dyscalculia – a condition that affects someone’s relationship and abilities with math and numbers.

It can affect all ages but is often first identified in childhood.

There’s no relationship between intelligence and dyscalculia – anyone of any ability can have the condition.

Dyscalculia can have a negative impact on someone’s mental health and confidence, so early intervention is helpful so that coping strategies can be put into place.

In this guide, we’ll discuss how you can get a dyscalculia diagnosis, and we’ll also go over the options available to you once you have that diagnosis.

Let’s get started.

Is It Beneficial To Get A Dyscalculia Diagnosis?

Receiving a diagnosis and subsequently understanding why you struggle with math can relieve a lot of stress and pressure.

It can be reassuring to understand that you’re not lacking intelligence, and you’re not lazy; your brain just works differently from those without dyscalculia.

The same applies to children, and it can also be comforting for them to know that they’re not doing anything wrong.

How Do You Get Diagnosed With Dyscalculia?

The best route for a formal dyscalculia diagnosis for many people is to go through a private provider.

The provider should have suitable experience to carry out the assessment. You can learn more about this by visiting the BDA website.

Assessments usually last around two to three hours, but it will vary from provider to provider.

During this time, an assessor will explore your number sense and attainment in mathematics.

Assessment can be nerve-wracking, but whoever you choose for your assessment will aim to put your mind at ease every step of the way.

See also: How Can I Get My Child Tested For Dyscalculia?

Does The NHS Diagnose Dyscalculia?

While dyscalculia is recognised as a specific learning difficulty, it is not typically diagnosed by the NHS in the same way that medical conditions are diagnosed and treated.

The challenge partly lies in the nature of dyscalculia itself; being of genetic origin, it does not have a cure, which positions it differently within the healthcare system.

However, this does not mean that support is unavailable for individuals with dyscalculia, which we will discuss in more detail later on in this article.

How To Choose The Best Dyscalculia Assessment Provider

If you want to pursue an assessment for yourself or for your child, it’s important to find a trusted provider to carry out the assessment.
If you know someone who has had a dyscalculia assessment themselves, ask who did their assessment.

When researching an assessment provider, check for testimonials and reviews to make sure they are highly rated.

And don’t be afraid to ask lots of questions.

What Is The Treatment For Dyscalculia?

Unfortunately, there is no treatment for dyscalculia in terms of medication, but there are plenty of methods that can be used to manage the condition.

That being said, if dyscalculia is accompanied by anxiety or ADHD, it can be helpful for those to be managed with medication. Speak to your GP about this.

There are many tactics that can support someone with dyscalculia – we’ll go over a few of them below.

Strategies For Managing Dyscalculia In Children

The first thing to do following a dyscalculia diagnosis for your child is to notify the school – they will be responsible for making reasonable adjustments to support your child on their education journey.

The school can allow your child additional time in tests, provide tuition and supportive technology, and adapt lessons so that information related to math and numbers is presented in a different way.

It can be beneficial to build a close relationship with the school and your child’s teacher so you can both report back on progress – in school and at home.

We’ve produced a few guides on how children with dyscalculia can be supported, which you may find helpful – take a look at them below:

Strategies For Managing Dyscalculia In Adults

If you’ve received a dyscalculia diagnosis, it can be helpful to speak to your employer.

We do understand that it can be a worry to express any vulnerability to your employer for fear of fallout, but it is important and can lead to your day-to-day working life becoming much easier.

Your company has a duty of care and should make reasonable adjustments to support you once they are aware of your diagnosis.

Reasonable adjustments can include allowing additional time if you have to undertake a task involving numbers, being provided with technology that makes math and number-related tasks easier to manage, presenting information in different ways, and allowing for more breaks.

There are many tactics you can adopt to manage your condition in your personal life, too – receiving your diagnosis can open up new ways of tackling time management, budgeting, and much more.

For more information on strategies for adults with dyscalculia, click here.

Final Thoughts

Receiving a dyscalculia diagnosis can be helpful in unlocking additional support to manage the condition for you or for your child.

Remember, it’s important to choose a provider that is experienced in dyscalculia assessments.

The assessment will take a couple of hours, but it’s really nothing to be worried about.

When you have your diagnosis, you can speak to your child’s school or your employer to receive additional support.

There’s no shame in having dyscalculia – we understand that receiving a diagnosis may be difficult, but we would encourage you to see it as a stepping stone toward receiving the support you need.