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An Overview

Speech disorders or speech impediments are a type of communication disorder where 'normal' speech is disrupted.

TYPES

  • Apraxia of speech
  • Cluttering
  • Developmental verbal dyspraxia
  • Dysarthria
  • Dysprosody
  • Muteness
  • speech sound disorders
  • Stuttering
  • Voice disorders

PREVENTIONS

  • Hearing loss is a risk factor for speech disorders. At-risk infants should be referred to an audiologist for a hearing test. Hearing and speech therapy can then be started, if necessary.
  • As young children begin to speak, some disfluency is common, and most of the time, it goes away without treatment. If you place too much attention on the disfluency, a stuttering pattern may develop. If your child is stuttering, make sure to allow them to finish what they want to say, listen to what they are saying, and then respond in a calm and relaxed way. If the stuttering continues, meet with a speech language pathologist for support.

WHEN TO CONTACT A MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL

  • Your child's speech is not developing according to normal milestones.
  • You think your child is in a high-risk group.
  • Your child is showing signs of a speech disorder.