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What Is Speech-Language Therapy?
 
Speech-language therapy is the treatment of speech and/or language disorders. A speech disorder refers to difficulty with sound production, whereas a language disorder is a problem communicating with or comprehending words.

Speech and Language Disorders According to the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association , the foundation of clinical issues in speech-language pathology at the (www.asha.org, 2004), speech disorders include:

  • Articulation disorders are the inability to correctly produce speech sounds (phonemes) in words and may include omissions, distortions or substitution of sounds.
  • Fluency disorders include problems such as stuttering, frequent disruptions in the flow and rate of verbal expression, sometimes accompanied by secondary struggle and tension in speech-related structures. Blocks, interjections, repetitions, or prolonging sounds are all characteristics of stuttering.
  • Voice disorders are caused by problems in the larynx (voice box) and are associated with different conditions including: neurological disorders such as nerve damage, organic disorders such as cancer or trauma, and misuse/abuse of the voice which causes nodules or polyps.

Language disorders consist of two categories: receptive or expressive. Receptive disorders occur when children have difficulties understanding language. Expressive disorders include difficulty putting words together, limited vocabulary, or inability to use language in a socially appropriate way.

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References:
 
Speech-Language Disorders and the Speech-Language Pathologist  [www.asha.org] (2004)
Date accessed:  February 16, 2004