disorders are difficulties with the way sounds are formed and
strung together, usually characterized by substituting one sound
for another (wabbit for rabbit), omitting a sound (han for hand),
or distorting a sound (ship for sip). The main characteristic
of the disorder are:
Omissions - Sounds in words and sentences may be completely omitted.
i.e. "I go o coo o the bu." for "I go to school
on the bus.".
Children do not pronounce the sounds clearly or they replace one
sound for another. i.e substitutes [w] for [l] or [r], or other
Distortions - An
attempt is made at the correct sound but it results in a poor
production. i.e a distorted /s/ sound may whistle, or the tongue
may be thrusting between the teeth causing a frontal lisp.
Additions - Extra
sounds or syllables are added to the word. i.e animamal.
The most common error sounds are [s] [l] and [r].
The speech is primarily
unintelligible and difficult to understand.
Articulation patterns that can be attributed to cultural or ethnic
background are not disabilities.
delay, is the cause of most articulation disorders. This can be
the direct result hearing problem. The child cannot hear the fine
differences between sounds, so speech perception is inhibited.
Articulation disorders are also associated with overall delayed
Some disorders have similar symptoms. The clinician, therefore,
in his diagnostic attempt, has to differentiate against the following
disorders which need to be ruled out to establish a precise diagnosis.
An articulation problem sometimes sounds like baby talk because
many very young children do mispronounce sounds, syllables, and
Mixed Receptive-Expressive Language Disorder.
In many cases,
there is not a clearly identifiable, structural or physiological
reason for the problem.
problems may result from brain damage or neurological dysfunction,
physical handicaps, such as cerebral palsy, cleft palate or hearing
loss. Or the condition may be related to lack of coordination
of the movements of the mouth, even dental problems. However,
most articulation problems occur in the absence of any obvious
physical disability. The cause of these so-called functional articulation
problems may be faulty learning of speech sounds.
A speech evaluation should
be performed by a speech-language pathologist. If there is a problem
with articulation that is not developmental in nature, speech
therapy is recommended. Parent involvement is necessary
for the best progress and prognosis. The length of therapy can
vary from 3 months to a number of years, depending on the cause,
the severity, the child's motivation, and parental support.
and Psychotherapy [ See
Therapy Section ]:
speech therapy sessions may be recommended as little as twice
weekly or as often as daily.