• Mental and behavioural disorders account for 19% of the global burden of disease - WHO
    • It is estimated that nearly 450 million people suffer from a mental or behavioural disorder in the world - WHO
    • Nearly 10% of total population suffers from these disorders - WHO
    • Mental health is a state of well-being in which an individual realizes his or her own abilities, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and is able to make a contribution to his or her community.
    • Nearly 1% of the Indian population suffer from serious mental & behavioural disorders and 10% from moderate disorders, requiring psychiatric help.
    • By 2020 mental depression will be largest cause of disabilty worldwide and by 2025 it may overtake heart diseases as the biggest health concern - WHO
    • About half of mental disorders begin before the age of 14 - WHO
    • Around 20% of the world's children and adolescents are estimated to have mental disorders or problems - WHO

Learning Disability

Learning disability is a term which describes specific kinds of learning problems. Simply put, children and adults with learning disabilities see, hear, and understand things differently. It is usually picked up in school when children have trouble learning and using certain skills.


  • Heredity
  • Poor health of mother during pregnancy
  • Complications at birth
  • Minor brain injury

The following checklist lists some common red flags for learning disorders:

  • Problems pronouncing words
  • Difficulty following directions or learning routines
  • Trouble with buttons, zippers, snaps, learning to tie shoes
  • Consistently misspells words and makes frequent reading errors
  • Trouble learning basic math concepts
  • Slow to learn new skills
  • Dislikes reading and writing; avoids reading aloud
  • Trouble following classroom discussions and expressing thoughts aloud
  • Poor handwriting

If your child is in school, the types of learning disorders that are most conspicuous usually revolve around reading, writing, or math.

  • Dyslexia
  • Dysgraphia
  • Dyscalculia


  • It is Learning disability in reading.
  • Problem with letter and word recognition
  • Understanding words and ideas
  • Reading speed and fluency
  • General vocabulary skills


  • It is Learning disabilities in writing
  • Problems with neatness and consistency of writing
  • Accurately copying letters and words
  • Spelling consistency
  • Writing organization and logic


  • It is Learning disability in math
  • Problems with memorization and organization of numbers, operation signs, and number “facts” (like 5+5=10 or 5x5=25).
  • Children with math learning disorders might also have trouble with counting principles (such as counting by 2s or counting by 5s)
  • Have difficulty telling time.

ADHD and autism sometimes co-occur or are confused with learning disabilities.

  • ADHD – Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), while not considered a learning disability, can certainly disrupt learning.
  • Children with ADHD often have problems sitting still, staying focused, following instructions, staying organized, and completing homework.
  • Autism – Difficulty mastering certain academic skills can stem from pervasive developmental disorders such as autism and Asperger’s syndrome.
  • Children with autism spectrum disorders may have trouble communicating, reading body language, learning basic skills, making friends, and making eye contact.


  • Counselling and psychotherapy
  • Special education
  • Remedial therapy
  • Speech and language therapy
  • Medicines may be required in some cases.

A single factor to remember is that LD children want acceptance, approval, success and achievement more than anything else. Here are some suggestions to help you help your child. Ensure that child has the appropriate help - that the school has a program in place to accommodate child's learning disability, and that she has remedial therapy after school hours if necessary. Consult often with child's teachers and therapists. Accept child's uniqueness unconditionally, both strengths and weaknesses. Be realistic in your expectations and demands.

  • Make a point of emphasizing and encouraging your child's strengths, interests and abilities while playing down her weaknesses.
  • Create opportunities where child can show others what he/she is capable of doing and reward the child as often as you can.
  • Routine is essential for your LD child. Not only does it make your life a lot easier, but child then knows what is expected of him/ her and when, and this makes child feel secure.
  • Don't get anxious about school grades - expect best efforts at all times, but remember that best effort might only be a 'D'. Help the child to set realistic goals for himself and to compete with himself rather than with others.
  • Provide a safe environment for the child to attempt difficult tasks, and maybe even fail at them, without fear of ridicule or rejection. When child feels secure in his environment, he will feel secure to try his best.
  • Provide sympathy and understanding, encouragement and support, and loads of unconditional love.
  • Nurture yourself - you need to be physically, mentally and emotionally strong to cope with an LD child.