Neurological Dysfunction refers to a disorder of the Central Nervous System and affects the efficiency of brain processes. All people have a degree of neurological dysfunction; however, in the majority of people, dysfunctions are minimal. Minor dysfunctions can be compensated for, do not hinder daily functioning and are not detrimental to learning/development.
However, for some people, (children and adults), levels of neurological dysfunction exceed typical levels. In cases of high levels of neurological dysfunction, the brain is unable to adequately make compensations, and the dysfunction becomes detrimental to learning/development/rehabilitation and as a consequence, impairs daily functioning. Neurological dysfunction in high levels acts as a barrier to learning, making it increasingly difficult to acquire higher level skills. Unless corrected, dysfunctions do not disappear or reduce over time of their own accord.
Neurological Dysfunctions in higher than average levels occur for many reasons, including neurological damage – caused by trauma/illness, pregnancy/birth complications, delayed/omitted developmental milestones, and reduced environmental opportunities in early infantile development. Neurological dysfunctions often underlie Specific Learning Difficulties, affecting the way in which one learns and attitude to learning; in addition to also affecting emotional/social functioning, behaviour and communication. In children with neurological immaturities are often, ‘neurological speaking,’ not “ready to learn,” where usual strategies for learning prove ineffective. Similarly, in cases of acquired brain damage, neurological dysfunctions can act as a barrier, making it harder for a person to regain skills lost through accident/injury/illness.