How To Know If Speech Therapy Can Benefit Your Child – Mom ThrivesMart 20, 2021
Learning to speak and communicate effectively is an essential part of a child’s development. Every child develops verbal and non-verbal skills to express themselves as they age.
Even younger children who have not yet learned to form words use signs and body language to indicate their needs. Usually, the caregivers are tuned to the child’s signals and understand what they want. Although the development of the language progresses in individual steps, parents often wonder whether the family could benefit from it Speech therapy for children.
Here is some interesting information that can help you make the right decision.
How speech therapy helps
Children begin to form words and thoughts at an individual age. Some learn skills early on and express themselves about their needs and feelings. Others are shy and may take longer to speak.
Speaking is not just about communicating with words, it’s also about pronouncing words correctly. Children also need to learn to pronounce words clearly so that the listener can understand them. Understanding what is being said is another facet of effective communication.
Not only can speech therapy help with these skills, but the sessions are also beneficial for children who have difficulty eating, chewing, and swallowing.
Language training is about Strengthening your mouth muscles and stimulating the structure of the mouth to develop an advanced sensitivity to flavors and textures. Parents who deal with children who are fussy eaters may find that language training makes their children more receptive to trying new foods.
How to recognize the need for speech therapy
Raising a baby and watching them learn to communicate is an amazing experience. Parents should expect their children to develop their skills gradually. If not, that is a sign that speech therapy could help.
At the same time, it’s important to understand that every child is unique and you need to give them the time to grow at their own pace.
Age – Up to 6 to 7 months
Babies become unresponsive for the first few months, but after about four months they begin to explore their vocal abilities. The adorable baby sounds you hear at this point indicate the baby’s first attempts. If the child is completely calm, you may need therapy at some point.
Age – 7 to 12 months
Although babies cannot form actual words, they begin to express themselves out loud using a range of different noises. Most parents learn to identify these sounds and voice inflections in order to understand what the child needs.
If you noticed a lack of this sound, consider it a signal. While it is advisable to enroll with a certified speech pathologist trained to work with young children, parents can also learn to offer therapy at home.
Take the NLN PAX practice exam enables parents to assess their abilities to help children in a safe, loving environment.
Age – 7 to 24 months
By the time your child is 24 months old, they should be able to understand what is being said to them. While children may not fully understand words and their meanings, they are able to spot clues Facial expressions and body language.
If you’re strict, that is an indication that mom or dad are upset. But a smile says everything is fine with the world. Children respond with gestures and actions. If you don’t induce this reaction, speech therapy may be needed.
For example, say, “Let’s get some ice cream!” should run the child to the door with a happy expression.
Age – 12 to 18 months
Most toddlers speak their first words at this age. And gradually add more expressions to your sound repertoire. Parents give a lot of encouragement in the form of pleased answers and laughter. Many children take their time, and it is not uncommon for them to postpone speaking those first words for 24 months.
This does not necessarily mean that they will have problems communicating in the future. However, getting an assessment from a speech pathologist can prepare you for the possibility of needing more sessions later.
Age – 12 to 24 months
At this stage the children learn the correct pronunciation. They listen carefully while the parents speak and try to imitate them. Repetition and practice are critical to skill development and require varying degrees of vocal cord training.
If you notice the child is having difficulty pronouncing sounds like b, h, m, p, and w, you may need to put them in for assessment.
Age – 18 to 24 months
By this point, most children will have learned a collection of words and the technique of combining them into two-word phrases to make themselves understood. Expect requests like “Now on!” “More milk!” or “Do you want papa!” However, if the child does not express them, you may need to get help.
At home, you can develop language skills by playing simple singing games like “A sailor went to sea, sea, sea. “Bringing music into language makes it easier for children to learn words and do repetition for fun. For example, it is helpful to sing nursery rhymes during bath and meal times.
Age – 24 to 36 months
Children learn more words between the ages of two and three. Pronouncing letters like d, f, g, k, n, and t can be a challenge for some children.
Parents can help by resolving words and getting children to repeat themselves after them. Constant practice helps to solve the problems on your own. However, if the child does not seem to be finding the right words, then therapy can be considered.
Age – 6 years and older
You may also want to look out for signs such as shyness or not playing with other children. Difficulty communicating with understanding or passing on what to say to the other children can be mistaken for shyness, even by parents and teachers who know the child well.
While parents are used to their children’s quirks and know what they are saying, it can be more difficult for outsiders to understand words that are not clearly expressed.
Why speech therapy is important
Early speech therapy in a child’s development can help in many different ways. For example, language training helps build social bonds so that the child learns to interact with their peers in elementary school. Practical communication skills are extremely important in order for the child to be able to express their thoughts, needs, and feelings.
Proper language is crucial in trying to build friendships in childhood and teenage years. Stuttering, lisp, difficulty controlling voice modulation, and nasality can all affect self-confidence and self-esteem. Reading, writing, studying and cognitive development can be hindered due to difficulties in understanding and speaking.
How therapy can be given
Therapists help children of all ages through group or classroom sessions that include similar peer groups and language challenges. Alternatively, one-on-one meetings are also useful for helping teenagers in a remote setting where they don’t have to worry about ridicule and embarrassment. Online therapy may be the best option for children to continue their sessions regardless of location and transportation issues.
The general personality development, intelligence and psychological stability of a child depend heavily on their communication skills. Language training can also ensure proper chewing and swallowing by strengthening the muscles of the mouth and preventing future articulation and language problems. Start with an assessment where the therapist will do a test to see if your child needs help. The sooner you start training sessions, the more likely the improvement will improve.