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Dyslexic people may have played a role in the survival of our species

According to a recent study, people with dyslexia have helped the human species to adapt and therefore have played an important role in its survival.

A benefit for humanity

Dyslexia is a reading and writing disorder specific and long-lasting, appearing in children and adolescents. This is a specific language and learning disorder (SLD) which is often the subject of scientific research. In 2017, for example, a French study discovered that the origin of dyslexia is not only cerebral, but also anatomical.

Dyslexia is generally associated with many negative characteristics, a paradigm that could change with the publication of a new study in the journal Frontiers in Psychology on the 24th June 2022. British researchers from the universities of Cambridge and Strathclyde claim that this disorder would have been a benefit for humanity throughout history. They believe that people who have more difficulty recognizing and interpreting words quickly would have a greater ability to explore their environment. This would aim to make up for the lack and thus allow them to make more original decisions and in a faster way.

Dyslexic people may have played a role in the survival of our species

Faster and inventive decisions

The notion of exploitation/exploration is a kind of trade-off that humans often face when making decisions. However, this pushes us to obtain certainty about the information we have. It is also a question of anticipating the results of the said decision. In the case of dyslexic people, everything is at the level of exploration and observation, despite a weakness of interpretation, instead of reinterpreting information already acquired. In other words, people with dyslexia would be more creative and act faster.

“Finding the balance between exploring new opportunities and exploiting the benefits of a particular choice is key to adaptation and survival. and underpins many of the decisions we make in our daily lives" , say the study researchers.

Nowadays, between 5 and 10% of the population global is affected by dyslexia, an otherwise inherited disorder. Thus, there is no doubt that dyslexia has been favored during human evolution. Thanks to their characteristics, people with this disorder would have played an important role in the survival of our species. However, our time gives a crucial importance to reading and writing, so much so that the advantages of dyslexics are found in the background , behind the difficulties they encounter on a daily basis.