Dysgraphia is a neurological disorder. It is characterized by writing disabilities. Specifically, it causes a person's writing to be distorted or incorrect. The cause of the disorder is unknown.


  • In children, the disorder generally emerges when they are first introduced to writing. They make poorly sized and spaced letters, or often misspell words, despite thorough instruction. Children with the disorder may have other learning disabilities. They usually have no social or other academic problems.

  • Adult cases generally occur after some trauma. This is damage caused by an accident. In addition to poor handwriting, adults may:

  • Have wrong or odd spelling.

  • Produce words that are not correct. For instance, using "boy" for "child".


Treatment varies. It may include treatment for motor (movement) disorders. This is to help control writing movements. Other treatments may address impaired memory or other neurological problems. Some caregivers recommend that individuals with this disorder use computers to avoid the problems of handwriting.

Some individuals with this disorder improve their writing ability. But for others the disorder persists.


The NINDS supports research on neurological disorders such as dysgraphia. The goal is to find ways to prevent and treat them.