View Full Version : Learning Disabilities Associated with ADHD


livingwithadhd
06-05-06, 10:40 AM
It is very common to have a learning disability along with ADHD. In fact, research shows that thirty percent of people with ADHD also have a learning disability. Beyond learning disabilities, over fifty percent of individuals with ADHD have some other type of brain-based disorder. This is why depression, anxiety, OCD, bipolar disorder and other similar disorders are higher than normal in ADD clients.

One type of learning disability that almost every person with ADD will have is an integrative processing deficit. This is the ability to take in information, process it quickly and make use of it. Most people with ADD are either slower than others in doing this or have trouble doing it at all. It is not that they do not understand the information, but conflicting signals will make it difficult to fully process.

Another common learning disability in people with ADHD is working memory problems. Working memory is another term for short term memory, or information that is told to you in the moment. This can affect information you hear, read, etc. Working memory is important for doing well academically and in your work.

Another learning disability that is common in ADHD clients is problems with visual/spatial processing. This is not too surprising since most people with ADHD have problems with organizing space. Academically, this will affect subjects such as geometry and physics.

Other common learning disabilities are dyslexia, reading comprehension, arithmetic reasoning, oral expression, written expression, foreign language acquisition, syntactic processing and most likely other learning disabilities. This is why getting a thorough examination at the start is so important. An individual may be dealing with ADHD, but he or she may be dealing with a learning disability as well. And though you cannot directly do anything about a learning disability, it is good to know you have one and how it affects your ability to function. Also, you may receive academic accommodations as well as job accommodations if diagnosed with an LD.

In order to find out if you have a learning disability, it will be necessary to go through a lengthy set of tests that compare and contrast your IQ, personality and interests. If you do significantly better on one aspect of a test than another, this could signify a learning disability. For example, if you do really well on the verbal part of your IQ test and not so well on the visual/spatial section of the IQ test, you may have a learning disability.

It is not known exactly why ADD often comes with some type of learning disability. Most likely, the atypical wiring of an ADDer has something to do with it. New research is being done every day on the brain and how it works, and science definitely does not have all the answers to these questions yet.

barbyma
06-05-06, 11:06 PM
It is very common to have a learning disability along with ADHD. In fact, research shows that thirty percent of people with ADHD also have a learning disability. Beyond learning disabilities, over fifty percent of individuals with ADHD have some other type of brain-based disorder. This is why depression, anxiety, OCD, bipolar disorder and other similar disorders are higher than normal in ADD clients. 50% of people with ANY brain-based disorder have one or more comorbid disorders!

The high rates of comorbidity with bipolar disorder and ODD/CD are probably due to common genetic predispositions.

Higher rates of depression and anxiety among ADHDers are more likely due to situational factors; living with ADHD can be difficult.


Another common learning disability in people with ADHD is working memory problems.
Working memory problems are a symptom, not a "learning disability".

Another learning disability that is common in ADHD clients is problems with visual/spatial processing. This is not too surprising since most people with ADHD have problems with organizing space.This is not true. Visuo-spatial processing is no different in ADHDers than the general population, and problems organizing space is not a characteristic of ADHD.

Sensory processing disorders are commonly comorbid with ADHD, but unrelated.


In order to find out if you have a learning disability, it will be necessary to go through a lengthy set of tests that compare and contrast your IQ, personality and interests.This is not how learning disabilities are tested.

The battery of tests that reveal learning disabilities do not necessarily involve IQ (although it may, some school districts prohibit the use of IQ tests) and they NEVER involve "personality" or "interests".

krysta
07-27-06, 06:12 PM
To LivingwithADHD Please cite wherever your getting your information from. It's good practice and it back-up whatever your saying. Anyway, what research are you saying shows all that you stated, because some of the information sounds completely accurately.

QueensU_girl
07-30-06, 12:23 AM
The battery of tests that i had done involved personality (MMPI, Rorschach).

re: #1, last sentence.

There is mention of "wiring flaws" being involved in ADD/ADHD. This is not exactly correct.

Rather, the concept of "wiring problems" is what is happening in LDs. (eg. an actual "Miswiring"; likely during pre-natal development.)

Other than frontal lobe differences or frontal lobe DA receptor differences, there is no Exact Imaging, Anatomical Finding, etc. that indicates problems with "wiring" in ADD/ADHD.

NB. EEG is only able to measure activity on the outside of the cortex. Some types of Imaging can measure blood flow when radioactive uptake is measured; but no test, as of yet, can "prove" the EXACT dysfunction of what is going on in the brain -- wiring-wise or "activity" [firing; chemically; bloodflow] wise -- across all LDers or all ADD/ADHDers.

Even Dr. Daniel Amen finds at LEAST six (6) types of ADD/ADHD. (In his books, he doesn't even touch on LD radiology...)

barbyma
07-30-06, 07:44 PM
Even Dr. Daniel Amen finds at LEAST six (6) types of ADD/ADHD. (In his books, he doesn't even touch on LD radiology...)IMO Dr. Amen is a quack.

His "6 types" is based on a distribution (localization) of brain functions that is incorrect and an imaging technique (SPECT) that cannot do what he claims.

In short, it's baseless.

barbyma
07-30-06, 07:52 PM
The battery of tests that i had done involved personality (MMPI, Rorschach).
First, the MMPI, despite the fact that the "PI" stands for "personality inventory", is not strictly personality. It's really used to assess psychopathology. It is not used to diagnose LDs. Likely you were given it to rule out psychological problems or disorders.

The Rorschach has absolutely nothing to do with LDs. I'm not sure why anyone still uses it (given the fact that it is useless), but some psychologists do as many tests as possible just to cover each axis as thoroughly as possible.

QueensU_girl
12-16-06, 02:20 PM
I think they do them to get a broader picture of what may be happening. MMPI is a joke, i tend to think.

If someone has an injury that was not identified or treated for years, and it causes them chronic pain, they come up as being somatic, etc.

I have a friend who was diagnosed as Somatoform, and the Clinic never even had an MD do a physical.

The friend has chronic heartburn and stomach pains due to Anorexia. (If anyone lives on coffee and cigarettes, ofcourse they have stomach problems.)

The friend has constant back pain. (She has untreated Scoliosis. A crooked spine screws up the back muscles, so they are constantly hard and in spasm, trying to keep the body aligned. Duh. Our body always strives to keep our head upright, even and our eyes centred.)

The friend told them that she had sexual pain with sexual activity with men. (My friend is a closeted lesbian; all sex has been non-consensual and w/o foreplay/lubricant. Ofcourse all her sexual experiences with men are painful!)


If they had INSISTED on a Collaborative Historian, I could have helped my friend with "contextualizing" her life and bodily experiences with gender, pain, and health problems, but not all Clinics use Collaborative Historians.

I think much personality assessment is useless and worthless, really. (Except maybe things like Bob Hare's PCL Checklist....but even with that, it can only be used on Males. Females almost never score high.)

Skully
12-18-06, 12:02 AM
I think much personality assessment is useless and worthless, really. (Except maybe things like Bob Hare's PCL Checklist....but even with that, it can only be used on Males. Females almost never score high.)
Please explain this and find research to support WHY females never score high. Don't make a generalized statment like above, and NOT back it up.

Crazy~Feet
12-18-06, 01:16 AM
Man, I really miss Barbyma...0 to off-topic at the speed of smell (sensory integration dysfunction, totally unrelated to ADHD) :)

meadd823
12-20-06, 04:12 AM
Yea I kind of do to. . . . she was full of facts and very direct.

~boots~
12-20-06, 06:22 AM
I'm adding dysgraphia :-)