At Nemours, our pediatric speech and language therapy programs treat children with hearing impairment, cochlear implants, and birth defects such as cleft lip and palate. Also, we work with children with other general speech and language disorders or delays. At home, we work with you, the parents, to carry over your child's newly learned skills for quicker, longer-lasting results.
A speech disorder refers to a problem with the actual production of sounds, whereas a language disorder refers to a difficulty understanding or putting words together to communicate ideas.
Speech therapy programs also work with children who have other general speech and language disorders or delays, including:
- articulation disorders, which are difficulties producing sounds in syllables or saying words incorrectly to the point that other people can't understand what's being said
- fluency disorders, which include problems such as stuttering
- resonance or voice disorders, which include problems with the pitch, volume, or quality of the voice that distract listeners from what's being said
- dysphagia (swallowing disorders) or other oral feeding difficulties relating to weak oral muscles
- receptive language disorders, which refer to difficulties understanding or processing language
- expressive language disorders, which include difficulty putting words together, limited vocabulary, or inability to use language in a socially appropriate way (pragmatic language skills)
- auditory neuropathy
Speech therapists can facilitate sign language development as a means of communication in children who are not verbal due to developmental delay or hearing loss. They also offer coping and compensatory strategies for children with auditory processing disorders.