What if you could help your child live a happier and more productive life?
This is what all parents want for their children. However, for parents of children with language disorders, it can be often be frustrating to help their children do anything from speak clearly to understanding others.
However, the more you know about these disorders, the more you can help your child and any others with a language processing disorder. Keep reading to review our comprehensive guide to child language disorders.
What Are Child Language Disorders?
There are different types of language disorders (more on this in a moment). However, they are all rooted in a difficulty finding and saying the right words and/or a difficulty in understanding what other people say.
Adults sometimes confuse certain language disorders with a child being hard of hearing. However, these children do not have trouble hearing. Rather, their difficulty is with fully understanding and applying the various rules of standard spoken communication.
The good news is that the more you know about your child’s language disorder, the easier it will be to treat it.
Different Types of Disorders
There are three different kinds of language disorders. The first is a receptive language disorder, which means that the children have trouble understanding what those around them say.
The second type of language disorder is an expressive language disorder. This means that the child has difficulty in fully expressing their different thoughts and different ideas via language.
The final type of language disorder is a mixed receptive-expressive language disorder. Simply put, this is a combination of the first two disorders, meaning that a child has difficulty understanding others as well as making himself understood by others.
Language Disorder Symptoms
There are a few general symptoms that a child has a language processing disorder. This includes speaking less than other children and speaking in short sentences that are missing conjunctions such as “and” or “but.”
Another symptom is that the child may have trouble responding to directions they are given. This is likelier if the instructions contain information about time, location, or description. They may also have trouble with directions that exclude a certain category of something, such as bringing every ball except the red one.
A final symptom may be that a child continues to misuse verbs or nouns after their peers have stopped doing so. The good news is that these specific systems will give a speech pathologist (either in your area or online) a specific area to focus on during speech therapy.
Delay vs. Disorder
You will hear many different terms when it comes to your child’s language disorder, including “delay” and “disorder.” While some people may use these terms as synonyms for one another, it’s good to know what the actual difference is.
“Delay” refers to a child who is developing their speech skills in the standard order but slower than the standard rate. “Disorder” refers to a child whose development is non-standard, and this may manifest in a variety of surprising ways.
Causes of These Disorders
Many parents are understandably curious about what the causes of language disorders are. Unfortunately, there are many different potential causes, so it is difficult to isolate what may be the cause for a particular child.
In some cases, it is genetic, as anywhere between twenty percent to forty percent of children with a history of family speech issues end up with their own language disorder.
Other cases may be linked to differences in prenatal care. Some studies have shown that women who take folic acid supplements while pregnant have a reduced chance of developing a language disorder.
Finally, speech issues may be linked to other conditions that the child is facing. This includes Down syndrome, autism, and premature birth as well as other intellectual disabilities.
How Common is This?
When your child is dealing with a language disorder, it’s easy to feel isolated and lonely. However, it’s important for parents and children alike to realize that these disorders are more common than most people imagine.
Some studies have found that up to five percent of the child population suffer from various language disorders. This means that over sixteen million children may suffer from these language disorders in America alone.
Reaching out to other families who may be experiencing this can be beneficial and is a good supplement to getting traditional speech therapy.
How to Diagnose This
Earlier, we talked about some of the symptoms that might serve as warning signs of a language disorder. How, though, would a pediatrician actually diagnose this?
Typically, a pediatrician has a good sense of certain language milestones that children will reach and what age they typically reach them. If your child is past a certain age and has not reached that milestone, it helps them identify things like receptive and expressive language delay.
It’s important to seek professional assistance as soon as possible. A pediatrician or other doctor can help rule out things like hearing problems and also accurately diagnosis the exact kind of language disorder the child is facing.
Don’t forget that diagnosis does not have to be expensive. You can typically receive cheap (and sometimes even free) diagnosis via local universities or school districts.
Types of Treatment
Once a language disorder has been diagnosed, the next step is for your child to receive treatment. How, though, will this treatment work?
The truth is that the exact treatment plan varies because the speech pathologist creates an individual therapy for each patient. In addition to their sessions, they will work with you on how you can extend lessons from therapy into your daily lives.
A speech pathologist can also help your child get an Individualized Education Program (IEP) for your local school system so they can participate in the speech rehabilitation. If your child cannot get an IEP, they may qualify for a 504 plan that will help teachers adapt to their unique needs.
The Bottom Line
You know how important a speech pathologist is to help your child’s language disorders. But do you know where to find the best pathologists?
Here at Great Speech, we are the ultimate authority in providing online pathology solutions for your child’s every need. To see how we can make each day brighter, contact us today!