As someone who has been suffering from dyslexia, I was not aware of it until recently. I did know, however, that through my school years, I always had to work twice as hard as my fellow students in order to succeed academically. My drive to excel pushed me to further my studies and unbeknownst to me helped overcome this disability.
Needless to add that if you are dyslexic or know someone who is, the task of learning in any field can be not only very challenging but also very frustrating. Unfortunately, many do not possess the drive and ambition that others do and fall victim to what could be easily resolved and save much pain and strife.
Overcoming dyslexia is but one area that Dr. Moshe Elbaum, an Israeli expert at helping children and adults improve and overcome a variety of learning and behavioral difficulties such as ADD, ADHD, dyscalculia, and more, has specialized in. Unlike other medical and health professionals, Elbaum does not prescribe any medication. His way of addressing these difficulties is through developing the brain in a natural way.
I met Dr. Elbaum last week at his modest office in Herzliya. I chose to focus the subject of our meeting on dyslexia for two reasons. The first is for purely statistical reasons. Dyslexia, in various degrees it turns out, is the most prevalent learning disability. Though it is estimated that between 5-17% of all children have some form of dyslexia, according to the National Institute of Health, approximately 80% of children who are diagnosed with learning disabilities have dyslexia. The second, you guessed it right, dear reader, is personal.
While there is no single test which can be used to diagnose dyslexia, some of its common symptoms include difficulties in learning new words and sounds, slow or inaccurate reading, very poor spelling and difficulties in copying from the chalk board or from other written documents.
According to Dr. Elbaum, “through eye motor training (without following a subject or through machines), the child can recover from his dyslexia by exercising the muscles of his eyes so that his eyes can move easily in every direction at his will. Training the eye muscles to do this means that the child no longer experiences brain fatigue or muscular tension when reading because his eye muscles become capable of performing the movements involved in reading.”
The benefits of Elbaum’s “Intelligence Integration” method are immense. “As his eye muscles get stronger,” Elbaum explained to me, “the child will likely enjoy reading more; have the capacity to read for longer periods of time; grasp more concepts as there are no hindrances affecting his ability to read; his self-esteem will likely improve; and he will likely have more energy for other tasks involving cognition, emotional processing, and so on. An issue with eye-motor functioning, even a small one can affect every area in a child’s life because of the inherent interconnectedness of the four main human intelligences (Physical-Cognitive-Emotional-Energetic).”
Learning disabilities, as many now know, result in learning difficulties which, in turn, produce attention and behavioral problems. Dr. Elbaum’s innovative educational theories and therapeutic methods are a breath of fresh air in a world where we pour medications down the throats our young ones and shower them with modifications in their test formats and provide them with other facilitations. The current methods of addressing the problems make our children more dependent on their disabilities instead of providing them with tools and skills which will enable them to overcome those disabilities. “Intelligence Integration” is referred to as “the physical natural foundation of learning” since it looks to the body as the primary source of such difficulties. Elbaum argues that “while medications may treat symptoms, finding the root source of the difficulty and building key neural networks that can improve these abilities with a natural training program can help resolve or significantly improve the problem altogether.”
Dr. Elbaum’s method is being taught and practiced in Israel and other parts of the world with great success. He recently launched an Internet project to make the simple techniques of “Intelligence Integration” available to all trough affordable e-Learning courses.
As always, Israel, this time through Dr. Elbaum, is a leader in helping make the world a better, healthier and more promising place for many.
Read Start-Up Israel to keep your finger on the pulse of Israeli high-tech and innovation!