About communication disorders
The most common communication disorders in children are:
- language disorders – these are problems understanding and/or using spoken words or sentences to exchange ideas
- speech disorders – these are problems making and combining sounds in words
- stuttering – this is a speech disorder that makes it hard for children to speak smoothly
- voice problems – these might be hoarseness, breathiness, harshness or a voice that’s too high/low or too loud/weak
- social communication disorder – this is when someone has difficulty communicating for social purposes.
Treatment, therapies and supports for children with communication disorders
Some children grow out of communication disorders. But others have longer-lasting challenges.
If your child has a communication disorder, the treatment and support they need will depend on the disorder they have.
It’s likely that your child will work with a speech pathologist. A speech pathologist can assess your child to work out the best way to help them develop their ability to communicate.
You and your child might also work with some or all of these professionals:
- child and family health nurse
- genetic counsellor
- special education teacher or teacher’s aide.
Causes of communication disorders
We don’t know what causes many communication disorders.
Some communication problems might have genetic links.
Sometimes children have communication disorders and no other developmental concerns.
Sometimes children have communication disorders along with other health or developmental conditions. These conditions include: