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  • Two Types of Speech Problems

    Is it a Speech Disorder or a Language Disorder?

    A child’s communication is considered problematic when the child is noticeably behind his or her peers
    in the acquisition of speech and/or language skills. Sometimes a child will have greater receptive
    (understanding) than expressive (speaking) language skills, but this is not always the case.

    Speech and language disorders can affect the way children talk, understand, analyze or process
    information. Speech disorders include the clarity, voice quality, and fluency of a child’s spoken words.
    Language disorders include a child’s ability to hold meaningful conversations, understand others,
    problem solve, read and comprehend, and express thoughts through spoken or written words.

    Speech Disorders

    Speech disorders refer to difficulties producing speech sounds or problems with voice quality. They
    might be characterized by an interruption in the flow or rhythm of speech, such as stuttering, which is
    called dysfluency. People with voice disorders may have trouble with the way their voices sound.
    Speech disorders may be problems with the way sounds are formed, called articulation or phonological
    disorders, or they may be difficulties with the pitch, volume or quality of the voice. They may say “see”
    when they mean “ski” or they may have trouble using other sounds like “l” or “r”. Listeners may have
    trouble understanding what someone with a speech disorder is trying to say.

    Language Disorders

    A language disorder is an impairment in the ability to understand and/or use words in context, both verbally and nonverbally. Some characteristics of language disorders include improper use of words and their meanings, inability to express ideas, inappropriate grammatical patterns, reduced vocabulary and inability to follow directions. One or a combination of these characteristics may occur in children who are affected by language learning disabilities or developmental language delay. Children may hear or see a word but not be able to understand its meaning. They may have trouble getting others to understand what they are trying to communicate.

    A San Diego Speech Therapist Can Help You Today!