It takes children time to learn how to clearly speak and use words, but some children have underlying delays that make it harder for them to pronounce words clearly. If your child has an articulation disorder, our speech-language pathologists are here to help. Keep reading to learn what an articulation disorder is, how it can impact your child’s development, and why early intervention with speech therapy is vital for your child’s overall wellbeing and confidence.

What Is an Articulation Disorder?

Articulation is simply the way you produce speech sounds. It involves the movements of your lips, tongue, and throat to create the sounds for different words. An articulation disorder is when a child has difficulty with those movements which impacts how well they can produce speech sounds. Not only can this make it hard for others to understand them, but it can impact their confidence and ability to succeed in school

What Are the Types of Articulation Disorder?

There are four different areas of articulation with which a child can struggle:

  • Substitution– replacing one sound with another (example: saying “wabbit” instead of “rabbit”).
  • Omission– leaving out certain sounds in words (example: saying “cool”
    instead of “school”).
  • Distortion– altering the sound slightly, making it difficult to understand (example: a lisp or a slurred “s” sound).
  • Addition– adding unnecessary sounds to words (example: saying “puh-lease” instead of just “please”

Signs and Symptoms of Articulation Disorders

In addition to the substitution, omission, distortion, or addition of sounds when speaking, common signs of an articulation disorder include:

  • Difficulty pronouncing sounds appropriate for their age
  • Frustration at not being understood
  • Others can’t understand what they’re trying to say
  • Unwillingness to speak with others
  • Lowered confidence or self-esteem

The Importance of Early Intervention for Articulation Disorders

When it comes to your child’s development, you don’t want to “wait and see.” While some children can learn to overcome articulation disorders on their own, it’s better to get them support as soon as you notice they’re struggling. This can prevent them from forming bad speech habits, protect their self-esteem, and empower them to communicate freely with others from a young age. The sooner you get your child support, the easier it will be for them to reach their speech and language milestones.

Free Developmental Screening

If you’re concerned about your child’s development, you can take advantage of our free online developmental screening. This tool is a convenient way for parents to know with certainty if your child is achieving their developmental milestones or if they need extra support to achieve their brightest future.

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