Special Needs Resource and Training Blog

Providing online disability awareness education and training resources

Dyslexia-friendly books with cream pages and clearer text released for adults with reading problems

Published by inews
Written by: Katie Grant

Alistair Sims, who runs the Books on the Hill store in Somerset, has published the Both Press series of books adapted to help dyslexic adults enjoy reading.

Alistair Sims loves running a bookshop but never intended to set up a publishing company. After years of waiting for existing publishers to bring out titles aimed at adults who like himself have dyslexia, however, he decided to blaze a trail.

In his independent store, Books on the Hill in Clevedon, North Somerset, Mr Sims has always stocked a range of books by Barrington Stoke, a Scottish publisher which specialises in titles for children and teenagers who are dyslexic, or lack confidence in reading.

But with around 6.3 million dyslexic people in the UK – about 10 per cent of the population – it never sat right with Mr Sims that dyslexic adults were so poorly catered for. Click here to read the rest of the story.

What is spinal muscular atrophy and why does it require an Dh8m treatment?

Published by: UAE
Written by: Gillian Duncan

Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is a debilitating condition that affects around one in every 10,000 children.

Zolgensma, the most effective treatment, is also the world’s most expensive drug.

A single one-time infusion of the drug costs Dh8 million.

But why does it cost so much?

The National explains.

What is SMA?

SMA is a hereditary disease caused by a missing or faulty gene that the body requires to make a protein essential for motor neuron cell survival.

Without sufficient levels of the protein, the motor neurons – which are nerve cells in the brain stem and spinal cord that control activities such as speaking, walking, breathing, and swallowing – die, leading to muscle weakness and atrophy. Click here to read the rest of the story.

9 ADHD symptoms in children parents should look out for

Published by: WAFB 9
Written by: Charlotte LoBuono

In general terms, children with ADHD often have trouble staying focused and exhibit hyperactive and impulsive behaviors. Roughly twice as many boys as girls were diagnosed with ADHD in 2015-2016. ADHD is a chronic condition that may carry over into adulthood.

HeyTutor compiled a list of nine common ADHD symptoms found in children. While HeyTutor consulted established medical organizations including the CDCand the Mayo Clinic, only health care professionals—child psychologists, psychiatrists, and primary care providers—can appropriately diagnose children with ADHD. Diagnosing ADHD can be challenging because so many of its symptoms are, in milder forms, common behaviors seen in most children—from trouble listening to loud play.

Parents can take the first step in helping children who exhibit ADHD symptoms by contacting a medical professional for a consultation (or several) to confirm whether the symptoms fit a formal ADHD diagnosis. A doctor will be able to determine whether another condition may better explain the symptoms—or, as is often the case, if the child has a coexisting condition along with ADHD. Click here for the rest of the story.

How ADHD May Affect Reading

Published by: Psych Central
Written by: Morgan Mandriota

Many people enjoy cuddling up on the couch with a book as a way to wind down. But people with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), especially children, might find reading much more frustrating than relaxing.

This is because those with ADHD tend to experience reading problems.

ADHD is a common neurodevelopmental disorder that impacts children and adults differently, but many people report reading difficulties with ADHD.

So how does ADHD affect reading comprehension? It can be challenging for many reasons, including difficulty with:

  • focusing
  • memory and retention
  • processing information
  • sitting still
  • managing time
  • managing distractions (e.g., distracting thoughts or stimuli in the environment)

“Given difficulties with sustained attention, reading can be particularly difficult as kids often report rereading passages over and over again given lack of focus and being easily distracted,” says Angelique Snyder, Psy.D., a pediatric psychologist at the Children’s Hospital of San Antonio.

“Their inability to focus and concentrate may make it harder for them to visually track information and retain what they just read, so both their reading speed and comprehension can suffer,” adds Dr. Judy Ho, board certified clinical neuropsychologist and a psychology professor at Pepperdine University.

A 2019 study suggests that reading disabilities and ADHD typically co-occur. Snyder notes that kids with ADHD also tend to have comorbid learning disorders, which can affect reading. Click here for the rest of the story.

Repeat Emergency Department Visits for Individuals with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities and Psychiatric Disorders


This study examined the likelihood of this group returning to the ER within 30 days of discharge.


  • This population based in Ontario. Canada showed that individuals with both an IDD and psychiatric disorder had an increased risk of repeat ER visits compared to individuals with psychiatric disorders only.
  • For this combined disorder group, there was a trend of ER  visits more commonly resulting in admission
  • Residing in low socioeconomic neighborhoods and in rural areas, greater morbidity, and lower continuity of primary care over the previous 2 years were consistently associated with increased risk of repeat ER visits.


Durbin, A.; Balogh, R.; Lin, E.; Wilton, A.S.; Selick, A.; Dobranowski, K.M. Lunsky, Y. (2019). Repeat Emergency Department Visits for Individuals with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities and Psychiatric Disorders. American Journal on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities. 124 (3) 206-219.

%d bloggers like this: