Speech impairments and disorders — more widely known as communication disorders — occur in one in twelve children. They are conditions in which a person has problems forming speech sounds necessary to communicate with others.
They may be “disfluencies,” a repetition of a word or sound. A common example of disfluency is stuttering. Another is an articulation disorder, where an individual has physical difficulties forming word sounds due to teeth or palette problems, or brain/nerve damage such as from cerebral palsy. A third type are voice disorders due to malfunctioning in the passage of air through the lungs, vocal cords, throat, mouth, and lips.
The effects of these various communication disorders are wide-reaching for a child’s future. So, early testing and treatments are available for all these symptoms and causes.