Learning to Communicate: How Having a Speech Impediment Impacts Your Child?
Almost everyone has met someone with a speech impediment. It may arise from a stuttering issue or hearing challenge or even a condition like Tourette’s Syndrome (A brain condition that starts in childhood. Children with Tourette’s make sounds or movements such as coughing or twitching they can’t control. These are called tics.)
If your child has a speech impediment, you may be only beginning to understand how much this condition can affect your child. Knowing what a speech impediment is and how it affects your child will eventually allow you to help your child overcome the effects.
Here’s the scoop on some of the causes of speech impediments as well as how they can affect your child’s day-to-day life.
Here’s What You Need to Know
A speech pathologist’s work covers a broad gamut of conditions. These can include difficulty with eating and swallowing as well as conditions like stuttering or voice disorders.
A speech pathologist can work with your child to improve their condition.
Additionally, your child’s doctor may suggest your child see an audiologist. This person may even have their deaf education degree, which is important as many speech challenges arise from difficulties in hearing.
These professionals will also work with you. A number of challenges arise from having trouble with speech.
You may not yet be equipped to deal with these challenges which, in turn, can hamper your ability to support and help your child. Now, this is how such a condition can impact your child:
1. Expressive Language Skills
According to Friendship Circle, if your child has a speech impediment, they may lack expressive language skills. Difficulties with this area of speech production can include not understanding how words and language are symbols that represent abstract concepts.
Your child may not understand how to put sentences together. They may have trouble understanding concepts like waving good-bye or shaking his/ her head to indicate “no.”
Working with a speech pathologist will help your child learn to communicate better with you and others.
2. Stuttering and Speech Fluency
A child with a stuttering problem experiences speech in starts and stops. They repeat words, have speech blocks or will prolong pauses in speech in some way.
Additionally, this issue may be accompanied by physical expressions of the disorder as well. These can include tension in areas like the neck and jaw, jerking or excessive eye blinks.
This condition may cause shyness in your child. They may feel too embarrassed to speak.
3. Social Skills Challenges
Many of the issues faced by a child with a speech impediment are not physical in nature. Rather, a child who has this kind of speech challenge may experience difficulties with their peers as well as with teachers and others in their environment.
This child may be bullied or have trouble making friends due to the difficulties they have with forming speech. Additionally, part of learning how to interact with people involves learning how speech affects those interactions.
There are often unspoken rules for how conversation works. A person with a speech impediment may shy away from talking.
This stunts social growth, opening up the space for misunderstandings, loneliness and other challenges. Your child’s speech pathologist (or audiologist) can help address these issues.
This work will help your child open up to the world and learn to interact with it and others.
It takes a multi-pronged approach to help your child deal with a speech impediment. Not doing so will exacerbate the challenges your child faces because of this issue.
Learning how an impediment affects your child is the first step you need to take to help you child overcome this challenge.
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