In general, researchers have been studying learning difficulties since the 17th century. Researchers originally thought that dyslexic people had some form of brain or nerve damage. In fact, during the late 1920 s, Dr. Samuel Torrey Orton redefined dyslexia as “cross- lateralization of the brain”. This meant that the left side of the brain was supposedly doing what the right side was normally supposed to do, and vice versa.
Today, several different theories exist to explain what dyslexia is and what causes it. Modern technologies such as fMRI Brain SPECT imaging have opened up the possibility for physicians to view the brain’s electro-chemical functions while a patient engages in reading and rhyming exercises. These exercises then produce an image “map” of the brain, highlighting strong and weak areas.
Technologies such as this have obviously contributed a great deal to our understanding of the physical components of dyslexia. But scientists look forward to using these breakthroughs as stepping stones toward the ultimate goal of correcting or compensating for the dyslexic condition.