Types of Speech Disorders

Vero Beach speech pathologist Dr. Julie Freiwald has over 35 years experience treating patients with the following types of speech disorders:

Articulation disorders are classified as difficulty using the articulators for correct placement of sound production. They are treated using auditory discrimination, followed by placement of the articulators as to where in the mouth they are produced. One uses their tongue, lips and movement of the jaw and cheek muscles to approximate the correct sounds. Movement can occur around the teeth – or the palate – or by simply varying the tongue positions.

Phonological Process disorders are seen in children who do not naturally suppress processes that are grouped by various patterns of sound production. For example, a child might not have suppressed the process of “fronting” as instead of producing sounds in the back of the mouth, he/she produces them in the front (Example: instead of back, the child says bat; instead of bag, the child says bad). Many other phonological processes disorders exist and the treatment is through auditory bombardment followed by a cycle approach.

Other types of speech disorders that are not necessarily developmental in nature include:

Apraxia: This is a motor planning (neurological) disorder where there is difficulty with sequencing of sounds. Individuals with apraxia demonstrate groping like postures around the mouth when trying to initiate the sound in a word. Apraxia can be seen in children or adults and is often seen in adults following strokes or brain injury.

Dysarthria: This is due to neuromotor disorders such as those with cerebral palsy, forms of brain injury and certain types of strokes. It is seen in individuals with weakness or too much tone around the oral facial musculature. Oral motor treatment can often be helpful.

Ankyloglossia: A physical condition where the lingual frenulum (tissue under the tongue) is shortened. Oral motor treatment is provided and often a trial of speech therapy is warranted before surgical clipping of the tongue is considered.

Tongue Thrusting: A forward movement of the tongue whereby an open bite may occur along with distortion of the /s/ and /z/ sounds.

Frontal and lateral lisps: A frontal lisp is where the tongue is moved forward creating the /s/ and /z/ sounds to be produced like /th/ sounds. A lateral lisp is where the /s/ and /z/ sounds are produced out the sides of the mouth with a distortion.

(Remember, speech is just the utterance of sound; whereas language is a sequence of sounds where meaning must occur.)

For a consultation, call Vero Beach speech-language pathologist Dr. Julianne Freiwald.