It is prime to acknowledge the difference between developmental verbal dyspraxia and other speech disorders.
What Is Developmental Verbal Dyspraxia?
Verbal dyspraxia has other names like childhood Apraxia of speech and developmental Apraxia of speech.
Apraxia is a type of motor speech problem. It affects various neurological functions. Brain plan, coordinates, and sends signals to different parts and muscles. In dyspraxia, the brain does not send proper signals lacking coordinated movement.
The genuine cause of dyspraxia is unknown. Yet, it is followed FOXP2 genes play a dominant role in this. FOXP2 genes are responsible for various language disorders. These genes direct in production of forkhead a protein that controls the working of other genes. This FOXP2 gene is in charge of elocution and movement that are necessary for speech.
Dyspraxia differs from other speech impairments (in which muscles are weak) whereas, in dyspraxia, the problem resides in the brain and its signal sending ability. The brain is unable in signals sending still does not affect intellect. Your child’s intelligence is intact. Other than the FOXP2 gene, any head injury or trauma can also cause developmental verbal dyspraxia.
How Various Parts Attached To The Brain And Work?
Vocalization is a process that is possible because of coordinated motor movement by the brain. The brain synchronizes the movement of lips, mouth, tongue together for correct speech.
Lips are prime for speech. It is a part of the oral mechanism that makes elocution possible. The desired movement of lips is requisite for correct articulation.
Tongue movement guides the production of sounds and words. Helpful in producing consonants and words. The roof of our mouth is also known as the palate. Our tongue touches this hard palate to make sounds like sh, ch.
Signs Of Dyspraxia
Signs of dyspraxia are often mistaken for other speech disorders. In dyspraxia, words are unrecognizable, while in other speech disorders, the child substitutes the wrong sound, like pronouncing ‘pump’ as ‘fump.’
Following signs can appear:
1 During initial growing years if speech appears late or the child has delayed speaking the first word.
2. Having difficulty in speaking complex words or words with many syllables like ‘addition.’
3. Constantly dropping specific consonants and vowels from words.
4. Pronouncing the same word differently every time like pronouncing hello as “yell, aall”.
5. Making different sounds every time for the same consonants or vowels.
6. Not able to speak certain vowels or consonants.
7. Unable to complete words or stuck at different words.
8. Elocution with wrongly stressed syllables with flat intonation.
9. Constant efforts in producing word.
10. Difficult to join different sounds to make words.
How Therapist Can Help You
A therapist can guide you through various other speech impairments that can be confused with developmental verbal dyspraxia.
It is not like any other speech problem. It needs a specialist to help the child in improving conditions. Severity may differ in different children.
A speech therapist or speech-language pathologist can help to diagnose an underlining problem. Speech problems like dyspraxia need speech specialists.
The therapist Generally checks the working of oral mechanisms such as lips, jaw, and mouth. A complete oral diagnose includes the movement of different parts in general while eating and speaking.
A speech therapist gives constant speech practice. It involves motor learning that helps in acquiring particular motor skills by doing it or practicing. Sensory cueing is another method that necessitates giving hints to children to inculcate the production of words as a habitual action. For all these speech therapist needs:
- A session with a child of at least 30 minutes is required to observe development.
- No less than 4 sessions in a week with the therapist are mandatory.
- Your therapist may work on AAC (Augmented and alternative communication). It is for speech impairment.
- Unaided AAC means the use of signs and facial expressions.
- Sign language or showing pictures that may help in developing speech, this method is known as the multi-sensory approach. The multi-sensory approach benefits in the development of various senses at a time.
Other Issues Connected With Dyspraxia
Sometimes a child with developmental verbal dyspraxia struggles with other things also. Such as:
- Late speech development means fewer words known can notice difficulty in speaking and writing.
- As the brain signal pathway is hindered, one can see less motor and skill development.
- The child attempt movements of lips and mouth for articulation.
- Coordination can also be a problem. The child may dislike a few basic daily activities like brushing teeth, tying shoelaces.
As A Parent What Can You Do
Parents play a pivotal role. You have to convince yourself that you can deal with this. Together as a family, you can swim through this.
- First of all, if you have any doubt about developmental verbal dyspraxia, gather as much information as you can.
- After this is to look for a speech therapist who can help you out.
- Following recommendations by a speech pathologist.
- Practicing activities and exercises at home as well.
- Be consistent with therapy. Follow what the therapist says.
- The most important is to appreciate the small achievements of your child.
- Few activities you can do at home as well. Constant practice of words repetition of words.
- Use various sounds of animals in stories.
Developmental Verbal Dyspraxia – An Overview
Developmental verbal dyspraxia appears because of malfunctioning of signal sending. Difficulty in coordinating motor skills this type of speech impairment occurs.
It requires speech pathologist guidance to improve the condition. It differs from other speech impairments. In many other speech impairments, muscles are weak or paralyzed. Here problem resides in the brain and not with the working of muscles.
Persistent exercises and therapy can help in improving the condition. It is salient to understand that verbal dyspraxia needs the help of a speech pathologist. Improvement can be seen only with continuous practice sessions by the speech pathologist.
Eventually, parents’ support is like an anchor. Your presence helps your child to get through this.
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