Help for Adults with Dyslexia: Essential Tips and Strategies

dyslexia help for adults

According to the Yale Center for Dyslexia & Creativity, dyslexia affects about 20% of the population in the US. Nowadays, early diagnosis in school-aged children is more frequent and allows better intervention. A question that is often asked is: will my child always be dyslexic? The short answer is yes, but it should be known that progress is continuous. A dyslexic person continues to evolve and find strategies that help them read. In this article, we will share everyday tips for dyslexia for adults.

Understanding Dyslexia in Adults

Dyslexia is defined as “Difficulties in accuracy or fluency of reading that are not consistent with the person’s chronological age, educational opportunities or intellectual abilities”. Simply put, it can be described as reading difficulties of varying severity.

In adults, the impacts may appear in various ways:

●       Difficulty reading complex or rare words;

●       Frequently self-correcting during reading;

●       Mistaking similar sounding sounds;

These are only a few examples. These difficulties can then result in glitches in the daily lives of adults with dyslexia. Both at school and work, they can experience challenges in understanding what they are reading. This may lead to difficulty in carrying out the tasks required of them. They also may require additional time to achieve a task or integrate misunderstood knowledge. In return, this may leave a person feeling overwhelmed, fatigued, and discouraged.

Help for Dyslexic Adults

If you think you have dyslexia, we recommend getting professional advice from a therapist. The following advice is not a replacement for clinical advice, diagnosis, or intervention. If you are currently treated for dyslexia, we recommend following your therapist’s advice.

Many accessible strategies are available to help you cope with dyslexia every day. They may be used both in your personal life and at school or work. Keep reading for these dyslexia strategies for adults.

Reading Tips

Adopting reading strategies is a must-do to help you read more easily. Whether at school, at home, or at the office, here are suggestions to try during a reading task:

  • If you find that you often skip a line or a few when reading, use a tool such as a ruler to keep your eyes on the right line. Lower the ruler when you have reached the end of the line. This also gives your eyes a break: they are not attracted to the rest of the text below. They also cannot be distracted by upcoming words.
  • Your finger can also help when it comes to spatial difficulties. You may already do this unknowingly, but if not, you might want to pick up this old trick. The ruler might not be enough to keep your eyes from wandering back and forth on the page. In this case, keep your index finger at the end of the word you are reading and slide it along to the right as you’re reading. As obvious as it might sound, this is usually infallible and also helps you keep the pace as you read.
  • When you’re reading and your brain just won’t decode a word, grab a highlighter marker and come back to the word(s) later. You can then take the time to decode the word in question. Focusing on a word to try and decode it may seem like the right solution to make sure you understand the text. But it may have the opposite effect… Persisting in trying to read a word will sometimes make you forget the information you just read. Continuing to read will instead allow you to preserve energy.
  • Keep your highlighters close and do not hesitate to use color coding to simplify learning. Using symbols and diagrams can also alleviate some fatigue by giving you a reading break. They can also help you find information you wrote down more quickly in your notes.
  • Declutter your workspace. If possible, do not leave other pages or books opened close to the one being currently read. Focusing on only the one you are reading at the minute will give your eyes and brain a break while also taking away distractions. 
  • Books have never been this accessible for dyslexic adults. Practically any newly released book is also released as an audiobook. Do you prefer to take this opportunity to practice your reading abilities? e-Readers also offer a variety of settings that allow you to adjust the device to your preference. Character font, size and spacing can be personalized.

Assistive Technologies and Tools

In this era of technology, a large number of tools are offered to you to cope with reading difficulties.

Most smartphones offer accessibility features, including some that can help with dyslexia:

  •  VoiceOver can read text shown on the screen that you may be having trouble reading;
  • Zoom allows you to enlarge your screen if you are struggling to decode words because of their small size;
  • Siri allows you to make verbal demands instead of typing them.

On computers and laptops, word processing programs, including Microsoft Word, can read your text aloud. You can usually adjust the settings to your liking – for example by changing the voice and speed. On these programs, you may also find a font that is easier for you to read clearly.

Assistive technologies are an interesting option. They are becoming more universally used and accepted, both educationally and career-wise. You can explore and play with the settings of these tools to see which functions are helpful to you. By integrating them, you may find a certain way to ease the reading difficulties. This in return may lift some weight off of your shoulders.

Success Stories: How Forbrain Helped Adults with Dyslexia

Forbrain is also a technology that helps adults cope with dyslexia by providing auditory feedback. 

Julia is an adult with dyslexia and auditory processing difficulties who benefited from Forbrain. As a child, her aspiration to become an actress was hindered by her struggles with reading and auditory processing. Despite her passion for performance, she found herself stumbling over lines and facing the wrath of impatient teachers.

With dedication and daily practice, Julia incorporated Forbrain into her routine, reading aloud with the device to sharpen her auditory and reading abilities. Ever since starting to use Forbrain to practice her reading skills, she has noticed a lot of improvement: Words came easier, reading wasn’t so scary anymore, and she felt more sure of herself. 

Looking back on her journey, she says “Forbrain would have made going to school, reading, and every aspect of day-to-day life from following directions, instructions to basic conversation SO much easier!”.

Today, Julia stands as a testament to the transformative power of Forbrain for adults with dyslexia. With newfound confidence and enhanced abilities, she is ready to reclaim her childhood dream of acting. 

Professional Help

Whatever your age, you might want to consider consulting a speech-language pathologist. The SLP can diagnose your dyslexia and suggest strategies to help you better cope with it. In addition to providing you with tips, they could help you identify and request accommodations. These may be of great support to you, both at school and at work. These accommodations may include:

  • Extended time on exams;
  • The use of laptops to access some of the assistive technology tools mentioned above;
  • Use of a digital recorder during meetings;
  • Allocation of a private or quieter workspace, when possible.

Dyslexia Support Groups

A simple Google or Facebook search will allow you to get in touch with support organizations. There, you will be able to connect with other adults affected by dyslexia. You will have the opportunity to chat about everything about dyslexia. You can ask questions you may have or tips you would like to share. This is a great option if you are feeling alone in your journey or struggling with the impacts of dyslexia. Nowadays, you can easily find in-person or online support, according to your preference. Help for dyslexia in adults on an emotional level is just as important as strategies.

Using Forbrain to Help with Dyslexia in Adults

Forbrain is an auditory stimulation headset. It helps children hear and process the sounds that they produce, louder and better. If you are a student, you may wear Forbrain while you learn new concepts, or prepare for tests and examinations. If you are a professional, you can use Forbrain before an important presentation or speech to work on your flow, enunciation, and confidence. Try reading a text aloud to condition your speaking voice and improve memorization.

Final Words

The adoption of several strategies to cope with your dyslexia can help you on a daily basis. Whether performing tasks related to work, school or personal hobbies, there are solutions such as joining a support group to discuss dyslexia, using a variety of tools – technological or not, and consulting a therapist to cope with the emotional and technical difficulties of your diagnosis. These are a few of the main suggested tips to consider to make living with dyslexia easier.

If you think you may be dyslexic, you might want to consider consulting a professional. A licensed speech-language pathologist or psychologist can assess and diagnose you. They will be able to suggest strategies and tips better catered to your needs.


Dyslexia FAQ. Yale Dyslexia, Accessed 29 Apr. 2024.

A 13 dyslexia. APA DSM-5 development. 2010. DSM-5, Accessed 29 Apr. 2024.

Tackling Dyslexia in children with Forbrain. (2022). Forbrain. Accessed 29 Apr. 2024. 

Roxanne Pelchat

Roxanne is a passionate bilingual speech-language pathologist. Her fields of expertise include developmental language disorders and learning disabilities (dyslexia, dysgraphia and dyscalculia).