Thursday, September 15, 2011

Children Speech Disorders - What Are the Types of Speech Disorders?

Articulation is the most common type of speech disorder among children. Disorders of articulation are characterized by the omission, distortion, or substitution of speech sounds.

"Tootie" instead of "cookie," "wed" instead of "red," "thop" or "top" instead of "stop" - these are examples of common articulatory errors that can be easily overcome with a speech therapy at home.

Sometimes only one or two sounds are defective, but sometimes there are so many errors that the speech is unintelligible to everyone with the possible exception of the parents.

Voice problems are not as common as articulatory problems. They include voices that are too high or too low in pitch, too loud or not loud enough, voices that are harsh, breathy, nasal or otherwise unpleasant, and voices that are monotonous - that is, lacking in flexibility of expression.

Problems of the understanding and use of words constitute another speech or language disorder. Words, of course, are symbols; they "stand for" or represent something. What the word "cat" means to you depends upon all of the past experiences that you associate with that symbol.

A child may know that this small animal likes milk, catches mice, has soft fur, and purrs when it is petted and still be unable to associate or "connect" the word "cat" with the animal.

Children who have difficulty in understanding or using words are sometimes referred to as "aphasoid."

Stuttering is probably the speech disorder that causes parents the most anxiety. Some writers believe that it is this very anxiety that contributes to the child's problem.

This disorder is usually thought of in terms of hesitations in the flow of speech, repetitions of sounds, words, or phrases, and facial grimaces or tensions. Although there is much more involved in the problem of stuttering than a description of the symptoms, it is these observable symptoms that cause parents to become concerned.

The classification of speech disorders given above is based on symptoms, without consideration for the cause. Under this system a child with a cleft palate, or other physiological defect, would be said to have an articulation problem, a voice problem, or both, depending upon his own speech needs.

Are you worried about your child's speech problems? Do you want to know more about children speech therapy and how to improve your child's speech at home? See my website:

From Jane M. Bishop

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