Does your child seem to be struggling to get their meaning across?
Do they seem like they don’t understand what others are saying to them?
Or, have you noticed you or a loved one have been struggling with these issues after a stroke or traumatic brain injury?
If so, each of these is a sign of expressive and receptive language disorders.
And speech therapy can help.
Here at Voz Speech Therapy, one of the speech therapy specialties we offer is a treatment for expressive and receptive language disorders. Whether you or your child is struggling with such a disorder, we can help.
Book your appointment today with Voz Speech Therapy, or read on below to find out more about these disorders.
What Is An Expressive & Receptive Language Disorder?
These are actually considered two separate disorders: expressive language disorders, and receptive language disorders. But because they so often occur together, treatment for one generally involves treatment of the other as well.
Let’s look at each of them separately.
What Is An Expressive Language Disorder?
An expressive language disorder is a disorder where somebody has difficulty expressing themselves, as the name suggests. This can take the form of speech, writing, gesturing, or even sign language for hearing impaired individuals.
At times, the symptoms of an expressive language disorder may just seem like baby babble or typical childhood speech errors. For example, a child with an expressive language disorder might use incorrect verb tenses, a reduced phrase length, mix up singular and plural nouns, or omit certain letters.
Children with expressive language disorders also tend to have smaller vocabularies than other children their age and speak in shorter sentences.
Other symptoms of an expressive language disorder in children include:
- Having difficulty finding the right word for a situation
- Using non-specific words to describe things
- Using the wrong words in a sentence
- Repeating the same or similar sentences often
- Hesitancy to speak
- Talking in circles
- Having difficulty telling a story
- Making frequent grammatical errors in their speech
- Having difficulty with writing
We aren’t sure what causes expressive language disorders in most cases, but we frequently see them associated with other conditions, like Down syndrome, autism spectrum disorder, or hearing impairment. As a result, speech therapy treatments for hearing impairments often overlap with treatment for expressive language disorders. They can also occur as a result of trauma, in particular a traumatic brain injury.
What Is A Receptive Language Disorder?
A receptive language disorder is a disorder where somebody has difficulty understanding what others are saying to them. Also known as a language comprehension deficit, the symptoms of a receptive language disorder generally show up before 3 years of age.
Children learn to speak by listening to others. As a result, children with a receptive language disorder usually have an expressive language disorder as well.
There is a wide variety of symptoms associated with receptive language disorders. Because it varies so much from person to person, there’s no standard set of symptoms. However, it may include:
- Not listening when you speak to them
- Not showing interest when you read to them
- Not being able to follow verbal instructions
- Not being able to understand long sentences
- Difficulty in learning new words
Like with expressive language disorders, we don’t know all the causes at play. However, they are often associated with other developmental disorders. Speech therapy treatments for autism spectrum disorder and Down syndrome, for example, often overlaps.
It can also be linked to hearing and vision impairments, as well as ADHD.
Types Of Expressive & Receptive Language Disorders
There are a number of different types of expressive and receptive language disorders. Read on below to find out more about the disorders we specialize in treating here at Voz Speech Therapy:
Speech Therapy For Aphasia
Aphasia is a speech and language disorder that can affect your ability to speak and write, as well as to understand spoken and written language. This makes it both an expressive and a receptive language disorder.
Aphasia can happen suddenly, as the result of a stroke or traumatic brain injury. But it can also progress gradually as a result of a brain tumor or another disease that causes progressive brain damage.
Because these injuries are more common in adults than children, aphasia is considered largely to be a concern of speech therapy for adults.
Because symptoms related to injuries vary so widely based on the severity of the injury, people with aphasia can have a wide variety of symptoms. Depending on the situation, somebody with aphasia may display the following:
- Difficulty recalling words
- Speaking in shorter sentences
- Creating word-like sounds that are unrecognizable
- Swapping words and sounds for others in sentences
- Difficulty understanding what others say
- Difficulty constructing comprehensible words
- Speaking in long, complex sentences that don’t make sense
Along with the speech and language issues, people with aphasia are also dealing with the other repercussions of their traumatic brain event. This can create an environment of frustration and depression as someone who was previously able to communicate and understand others very clearly now struggles to do so.
Depending on how one’s individual condition manifests itself, somebody with aphasia may or may not be aware that others can understand them.
Speech therapy for neurological conditions like aphasia can help.
Recovery of speech and language skills usually takes a significant amount of time. Most people are not able to fully recover. However, speech therapy treatments for aphasia can still help improve.
As you work with a speech therapist, they will help you or your loved one restore as much of their language skills as possible, and learn to compensate for the lost skills. In some cases, it’s important to seek out the use of AAC – augmentative and alternative communication methods as well.
Recovering from aphasia can be a stressful and overwhelming process, but speech therapy can help. Book your appointment today at Voz Speech Therapy to find out how.
Speech Therapy For Social Pragmatic Communication Disorders
Social pragmatic communication disorder is a disorder where people have challenges with both verbal and nonverbal communication skills.
That might sound like it’s similar to autism spectrum disorder, but they are separate conditions.
People with social pragmatic communication disorder have difficulty understanding the context behind certain types of communication. They may struggle with subtext or using non-literal language, as well as what type of communication is appropriate for the situation.
Some of the symptoms of social pragmatic communication disorder include:
- Difficulty switching between formal and informal language
- Difficulty taking turns during a conversation
- Difficulty understanding sarcasm or metaphors
- Difficulty adapting their communication style to the environment
- Difficulty maintaining relationships
Social pragmatic communication disorder can get in the way of interpersonal relationships, romantic relationships, and work in school.
We aren’t sure what causes social pragmatic communication disorder, but it may run in families.
Speech therapy can help.
We’ll begin with a speech therapy screening session to help determine whether your or your child’s issues are caused by social pragmatic communication disorder or another disorder. From there, we’ll work with you or your child to help you understand how to manage your disorder and better understand how others communicate with you.
It can be frustrating when it seems like everyone except you understands what’s happening in a social setting, but it doesn’t have to stay that way. Book your appointment today with Voz Speech Therapy to find out more.
Speech Therapy For Late Talkers
Every baby develops at a different speed. However, there are certain milestones babies are expected to meet along the way. Your baby might say their first words a couple of weeks later than the other babies in your playgroup, and if so that’s not generally a cause for concern.
However, if a significant amount of time has passed and their language skills don’t seem to be developing, it may be an indication they are late talkers.
Here are the signs your baby may be a late talker:
- Uses fewer than 10 words by 18 months of age
- Uses fewer than 80 words by 24 months of age
- Difficulty combining 2 words (e.g. mommy go, my shoe) by 30 months of age
In some cases, babies will grow out of this, and in others they will need speech therapy for children to help. The problem is that there’s really no way to tell, so it’s always best to seek out speech therapy treatments early on for late talkers.
We’re not sure what causes late talking, but we do know some factors involved. Boys are at greater risk than girls, as are babies who were born prematurely. If you were a late talker yourself, it’s more likely that your child will be as well.
Your speech therapist will work with you and your child to create a collaborative approach to care. Because you are your child’s primary caregiver, your speech therapist will help you to identify opportunities to improve your child’s speech.
Late talking can be alarming, but if discovered and treated early enough through the early intervention speech therapy program, your child has a good shot at developing their speech and language skills to catch up with their peers.
Book your appointment today with Voz Speech Therapy to find out more.
Book Your Appointment With Voz Speech Therapy Today
Expressive and receptive communication disorders can be incredibly frustrating, both for the person experiencing them and for those around them.
However, it doesn’t have to stay that way.
Through speech therapy treatment for expressive and receptive communication disorders, you can regain control over your communication skills.
We can help.
Book your appointment today with Voz Speech Therapy to find out more.