Have you noticed your child struggling with learning to read or falling behind in school?
Does your new baby have trouble with feeding or seems uninterested in their surroundings?
Do they stutter or have trouble making certain speech sounds?
If so, a speech-language pathologist can help.
Here at Voz Speech Therapy, we provide speech therapy treatments for children that can help with a wide range of different childhood speech, language, and feeding disorders.
We’ll be with you every step of the way, from screenings & evaluations to pediatric speech therapy interventions. We’ll guide both you and your child toward overcoming their speech or language disorder in the critical early years of development and beyond.
How Does Speech Therapy Treatments For Children Work?
If you’ve had speech therapy treatments for adults before, you may be familiar with how the process works. However, it’s a little different when treating children.
We’ll work with your child, yes, but we’ll also work with you. As your child’s primary caregiver, you’ll be playing an important role in their development. This is especially true if your child has a developmental disorder that causes them to have difficulty understanding what we’re saying.
Regardless, we’ll help you understand your child’s speech exercises and how to make changes in their routine and lifestyle that can help. We’ll answer any questions you may have about the process, guiding both you and your child toward feeling empowered in their speech and finding their voice.
Common Childhood Speech Disorders
Examples of orofacial myofunctional disorders common in children include:
Dysphagia & Swallowing Issues
Swallowing disorders tend to refer to two different things, for which a speech therapist can retrain your child to swallow more effectively:
Dysphagia – a sensation of food becoming stuck in your baby’s chest or being regurgitated
Odynophagia – pain in your child’s throat when they swallow
A speech therapist can retrain your child to swallow more effectively.
Ankyloglossia, also known as tongue tie, is a condition where your child’s tongue has a limited range of motion, which can create speech, feeding, breathing, and swallowing issues. A pediatric speech therapist can help.
Chronic Open Mouth Positioning/Breathing
If your child has a poor oral resting posture – that is, they sit with their mouth open, jaw shifted to the side, tongue protruding forward, or they snore, drool, and breathe through their mouth, a pediatric speech therapist can help.
Other Orofacial Myofunctional Disorders
Other orofacial myofunctional disorders include:
Extended pacifier or bottle use
Chronic thumb sucking
Speech sound disorders include things like:
Pediatric dysarthria is a disorder where the muscles in your child’s face are difficult to control. This can result from neuromuscular weakness or muscular paralysis, or an issue with the part of your child’s brain that controls these muscles.
This makes it hard for them to form certain speech sounds. Their speech may seem slurred or difficult to understand. A pediatric speech therapist can help.
Childhood Apraxia Of Speech
A disorder similar to dysarthria in that a child has trouble forming certain speech sounds due to difficulties in motor planning and coordination. However, rather than being a muscular issue, it’s an issue with the part of your child’s brain that controls their speech muscles. A pediatric speech therapist can help.
Selective mutism is an anxiety disorder that affects the way your child communicates. With selective mutism, a child is unable to speak in certain social situations, but may be fine or even on the chatty side in others. Speech therapy can help.
Other Speech Sound Disorders
Other speech sound disorders that can affect children include:
Fluency disorders refer to two different types:
A disorder where people repeat certain sounds and have trouble creating them. In most cases, it’s not a matter of intelligence – people who stutter know what they want to say, but have difficulty creating the sounds. Often times, their words get “stuck” and they need help getting them out. A pediatric speech therapist can help.
A cluttering disorder is a speech disorder where your child’s speech patterns are rapid, disorganized, compressed together, and tend to be unclear to the people around them. They may speak in meandering patterns, drop certain sounds in a word – like saying “popshn” instead of “population” – or speak so quickly that the sounds all blend together and lose coherence.
In many cases, a person who clutters isn’t even aware that they’re doing it. A pediatric speech therapist can help.
You may not think of it when you first think of the following disorders, but impairments & disabilities can have a significant effect on a child’s speech and language abilities. A pediatric speech therapist can help.
A child with hearing loss will have difficulty hearing and imitating the sounds they need to learn complex speech patterns. A pediatric speech therapist can help.
A child with a reading disability has trouble with reading fluency, speed, comprehension, or processing what they read. A pediatric speech therapist can help.
Intellectual disabilities are where your child has limits in their cognitive functioning, which can cause issues with speech and language. A pediatric speech therapist can help.
Autism spectrum disorder is a disorder with a significant amount of variance from person to person, and not everybody experiences it the same way.
In some cases, children with autism spectrum disorder will have communication and behavioral issues. In others, however, autistic children may have no discernable communication issues at all.
If your child has been diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder, or you suspect they have it, it’s a good idea to see a pediatric speech therapist for a speech therapy screening evaluation for autism spectrum disorder. If your child has any speech or language concerns in relation to their autism, we can help.
Other speech & language disorders common in children include:
Traumatic brain injury
Cognitive linguistic disorders
Fetal alcohol syndrome
The Importance Of Early Intervention In Speech Therapy For Children
If you notice a delay in your child’s speech or language development, your first step might be to speak to your pediatrician. And in some cases, pediatricians suggest a “wait and see” approach to dealing with speech and language delays.
And in some limited cases, the “wait and see” approach does work. But more often than not, a speech or language delay doesn’t go away on its own.
Children learn the vast majority of their speech and language skills before their fifth birthday. They do this by interacting with the world around them and mimicking the way adults and older children communicate. So if your child has a speech or language disorder that isn’t treated until later, they can miss out on this crucial window for development.
On the other hand, speech therapy early interventions have been shown to be far more effective when they begin at a younger age. Speech therapy interventions will still help an older child, but they’re unlikely to be as effective.
Book Your Appointment With Voz Speech Therapy Today
If you suspect your child has a speech or language disorder, book an appointment with one of our local speech therapists today.
We can help you understand where it’s just baby babble and the regular speech and language growing pains, and when there may be a speech or language disorder at play.
Book your appointment today – we can help.