But beyond the definition, there is a peculiar issue with the word dyslexia when a parent thinks her child may have it, and she approaches the child's school for help. That parent discovers that the majority of schools do not use the term dyslexia, and do not test for dyslexia.
Schools do recognize and use terms like "learning disability," "reading disability," or "specific learning disability." These are broader terms, but dyslexia would fall under one of these categories.
There is no question that dyslexia does exist, even if the term isn't common in some schools. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) has funded over 40 years of research on the subject and continues to research the best practices for helping affected individuals learn to read. The International Dyslexia Association reports that research shows that "as many as 15-20% of the population as a whole, have some degree of dyslexia."
So, in these blogs, I freely interchange the words such as "dyslexia," and "reading disability." While there are other learning disabilities, when I use this term, I am referring to dyslexia, or what some might call a reading disability, unless otherwise noted. If you prefer one or the other, feel free to think in those terms when the words are used. If a child has not been diagnosed, I will use the terms "suspected (dyslexia or reading) disability", or just plain, "struggling reader."