Speech-Language Pathology: What is it All About?

Speech-language pathology has to do with problems with speaking or understanding language. These types of problems can be related to hearing problems or impairment. A speech-language pathologist can treat these problems and help improve understanding and speaking skills.

It is best to get a speech-language therapist involved at a young age. They generally work with children who are having trouble with speech and language skills. Have a look at our article on signs of hearing impairment in children to learn whether your child may have a hearing problem.

Speech-language pathology can be divided into two categories of disorders: speech disorders and language disorders.

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Speech Disorders

These types of disorders have to do with the way a child speaks and produces sounds.

Articulation disorders have to do with how sounds are produced. The child may pronounce words so badly that a listener cannot understand what he or she is saying. They may struggle with spelling and people may often misunderstand them

Voice disorders have to do with problems in the actual voice. This means that there may be problems with pitch, volume, or the quality of the speaker’s voice. These problems may make it difficult for others to communicate because they get distracted by these voice faults.

Fluency disorders include problems like stuttering or saying parts of a word more than once or for too long.

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Language Disorders

These disorders have to do with how language is heard and understood as well as how language is used.

Receptive disorders have to do with problems in understanding language and processing what is being said. The meaning of what is spoken is not understood can lead to a lot of confusion.

Expressive disorders refer to problems with using language. In other words, problems with vocabulary, creating sentences that make sense or using language in the appropriate manner in different situations. These types of problems may cause social problems for children.

Cognitive-communication disorders involve problems with language due to difficulty with memory, perception, problem-solving, and attention.

Speech-language disorders can more often than not be treated and improved with the right type of therapy. When hearing impairment is involved, it may complicate things but there is always something that can be done. The key is to make sure that you pick up on any irregularities in your child’s speech and language development and his or her hearing responses.

Learn more about speech-language pathology here and here.


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