Speech delay or Alalia refers to a condition where the child has difficulty using the lungs, vocal chords, mouth, tongue or teeth to produce sounds or speech. This condition causes the child to be slow in picking up words and also lack the ability to shape the mouth and tongue to produce normal speech. At Milestone Therapy Group, we’re committed to helping children affected by Speech Delay (Alalia) and other speech disorders through licensed and certified speech therapists with years of successful treatment experience. Here’s a short compilation of facts and practices that will help you understand the problem of Speech Delay and take the right steps towards helping your child handle this speech disorder.
*Absence of usual sounds by the age of 15 months
*No talking by the age of 2 years
*Inability to speak short sentences by 3 years
*Difficulty putting words in a sentence
*Showing preference to gesticulation over verbalization
*Displaying difficulty in imitating sounds and actions
*Inability to follow simple directions
Some factors that may bring about speech delay in a child include:
*Physical abnormality in the mouth such as a deformed frenulum, lips, or palate
* Oral-motor dysfunction, which is a lack or delay in the area of the brain where speech is formed and communicated to the mouth and tongue
*Prenatal traumas (before birth)
*Perinatal traumas (immediately before or after birth)
*Viral and infectious diseases
*Brain traumas in the post-natal period (after birth)
Ways to help a child with speech delay
*Use flashcards or labels
Using flashcards to label objects around your home is a great way to help your child identify things and speak out these words. The more your child speaks and repeats new words, the better he or she will get at speech abilities.
*Turn play time into learning time
Kids are receptive to learning both verbal and non-verbal interactions when they play. Verbalizing play actions like ‘catch the ball’ or ‘give me the plane’ will help your child learn and speak newer words and phrases.
*Keep it short and simple
Make sure that the words you speak with your child are short, simple and audible. This will help your child connect better with you, which in turn will impact the way your child learns to emulate your speech and language.
*Use everyday situations
Try and talk to your child as much as possible about the things your child sees and hears through the day. For example, speak out the names of things that you purchase, the foods you prepare, the objects around your home as you do your cleaning routine and so on.
*Read to your child
Use books, preferably the kind that’ll allow you to point and name pictures for your child to understand and pick up.
The practices listed above may work to an extent in helping your child cope better with the problem of Speech Delay (Alalia). However, we recommend you book a consultation with a licensed and certified speech therapist to give your child the best chance of overcoming this speech disorder. At Milestone Therapy Group, we are passionately dedicated to helping children with Speech and Language Delay and other speech disorders find their path to normal and healthy childhoods. Our family of licensed and certified speech therapists has grown over the years and so has the number of children getting successfully treated under our caring and expert watch. Do feel free to speak with us and let’s get started helping your child take those first steps towards speaking without difficulties.