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Childhood apraxia of speech (CAS) is a motor speech disorder.
Children with CAS have problems saying sounds, syllables and words.
This is not because of muscle weakness or paralysis. The brain has problems planning to move the body parts (e.g. lips, jaw, tongue) needed for speech.
The child knows what she wants to say, but her brain has difficulty coordinating the muscle movements necessary to say those sounds.
Not all children with CAS are the same. All of the signs listed below may not be present in every child. Have your child evaluated by a speech-language pathologist (SLP) to rule out other causes of speech problems.
Symptoms in a Very Young Child
- does not coo or babble as an infant
- first words are late, and they may be missing sounds
- only a few different consonant and vowel sounds
- problems combining sounds; may show long pauses between sounds
- simplifies words by replacing difficult sounds with easier ones or by deleting difficult sounds (although all children do this, the child with apraxia does so more often)
- may have problems eating
Symptoms in an Older Child
- makes inconsistent sound errors that are not the result of immaturity
- can understand language much better than he can talk
- has difficulty imitating speech, but imitated speech is more clear than spontaneous speech
- may appear to be groping when attempting to produce sounds or to coordinate the lips, tongue and jaw for purposeful movement
- has more idfficulty saying longer words or phrases clearly than shorter ones
- appears to have more difficulty when she is anxious
- is hard to understand, especially for an unfamiliar listener
- sounds choppy, monotonous or stresses the wrong syllable or word
Potential Other Problems
- weakness of the lips, jaw and/or tongue
- delayed language development
- other expressive language problems like word order confusions and word recall
- difficulties with fine motor movement/coordination
- over sensitive (hypersensitive) or under sensitive (hyposensitive) in their mouths (e.g. may not like toothbrushing or crunchy foods; may not be able to identify an object in their mouth through touch)
- children with CAS or other speech problems may have problems when learning to read, spell and write.
For more information on the diagnosis and treatments, visit my source: http://www.asha.org/public/speech/disorders/ChildhoodApraxia.htm
Other Organizations Are
- Apraxia-Kids information site: http://www.apraxia-kids.org/ ,
- National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders: http://www.nidcd.nih.gov/
- Speechville Express (for caregivers of children with speech and language disorders: http://www.speechville.com/
tutoring in Columbus OH: Adrienne Edwards 614-579-6021 or email firstname.lastname@example.org