Childhood Apraxia

Childhood Apraxia of Speech(CAS): is a speech- motor planning disorder characterised by a reduced ability to volitionally sequence movements of the articulator for speech in the absence of paralysis, incoordination, or weakness of the oral musculature (dysarthria).

The Cause And Symptoms Of Childhood Apraxia

This is thought to result from a neurologic dysfunction, although there is no definitive evidence of specific brain pathology exists.

There are a few common symptoms of apraxia that parents should look out for. These in infants are:

  • A delay in saying their first words
  • Only a limited number of spoken words in their vocabulary
  • The ability to form limited consonants and vowel sounds

Further characteristics of Childhood Apraxia include:

  • Vowel errors or distortions
  • Speech production errors are inconsistent
  • Prosodic disturbances are evident, especially with the appropriate use of stress patterns.
  • Reduced ability to imitate sounds modelled by others, especially on multisyllabic words and longer length phrases.
  • Omission errors are evident; substitution, distortion, addition and prolongation.
  • With an increased utterance length, there is a higher incidence of errors due to increased and complex oral movements.
  • Groping and searching behaviours of the oral musculature are present.

Children with apraxia suffer with all of the muscles within their mouth. They find it difficult to place their jaws, tongues, and lips in the correct positions for coherent speech. Many children who suffer from childhood apraxia also suffer from other learning disorders such as a delayed ability to read, write or spell.

Treatment Of Childhood Apraxia

By treating apraxia from an early age, you may reduce the effect of the disorder in the long term. If you find your child is experiencing any speech problems, it is a good idea to have them assessed as early as possible. This is where Speechworx comes in. We will be able to help you and your child through any speech disorder they may be facing, including childhood apraxia. Be sure to get in touch with our team to schedule an appointment.