Many people think the reason why teens struggle academically is because they are lazy or stupid. But that’s not usually the case. Most of the time, the issue is actually learning disorders in teens. Most learning disorders can be classified as one of three forms: verbal, nonverbal learning disabilities, and learning disorders that affect executive functions, such as ADHD. Learning disorders not only affect teens academically, they also negatively affect a teen socially and emotionally. 

learning disorders in teens

Image source: Flick user- Brad Flickinger

Damaging effects of learning disorders in teens

Many teens with learning disorders have serious self esteem and body image issues. Often, teens with learning disorders go to school every day thinking that they are incapable of fitting in with other teens and succeeding in school or in life overall because of their issues in school. Recognizing the signs of learning disorders in teens is crucial to getting your teen the help they need. These signs include:

  • Have difficulty following directions in class: Teens with learning disorders may have problems focusing on one thing for an extended period of time. They may also have difficulties with storing what they’ve heard in their memory. Because of this, they may have trouble carrying out instructions.
  • Organizational issues: Teens with learning disorders may problems with their information processing abilities, which may make it hard for them to stay organized.
  • Have a problem paying attention: Teens may have difficulties staying still and focused enough to pay attention, especially when sitting in classrooms for hours on end.
  • Easily distracted, has a hard time staying on task: With short attention spans, teens with learning disorders can be a bit scatter-brained at times.
  • Have problems in social situations: Teens with learning disorders sometimes have trouble understanding how to behave appropriately in certain social situations.
  • Speak immaturely
  • Have difficulty dealing with things that are new in their lives
  • Impulsive behaviors

Helping your teen

Learning disorders can lead to negative social and emotional effects for your teen. But those effects can be lessened with your support and attention, as your teen’s parent. Instead of focusing on your child’s academic achievements, put the emphasis on who they are as a person. Do they have any other skills and traits that make them special? If so, make sure to encourage those attributes instead of their academics. Of course, don’t ignore academics completely, but make it seem less important than other things. This way, your teen can gain the emotional skills they’ll need to carry with them the rest of their lives.

Seven Stars can help

If working with your teen with a learning disorder seems like an uphill battle, consider sending your teen to Seven Stars, a therapeutic program for teens struggling with neurodevelopmental disorders.
For more information about Seven Stars, please call 844-601-1167.