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Comprehensive Speech-Language Assessment and Treatement

Language is different from speech.

Language and speech disorders can exist together or by themselves. The problem can be mild or severe. In any case, a comprehensive evaluation by a speech-language pathologist (SLP) certified by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) is the first step to improving language and speech problems.


Language

is made up of socially shared rules that include the following:

What words mean (e.g., "star" can refer to a bright object in the night sky or a celebrity)

How to make new words (e.g., friend, friendly, unfriendly)

How to put words together (e.g., "Peg walked to the new store" rather than "Peg walk store new")

What word combinations are best in what situations ("Would you mind moving your foot?" could quickly change to "Get off my foot, please!" if the first request did not produce results)

When a person has trouble understanding others (receptive language), or sharing thoughts, ideas, and feelings completely (expressive language), then he or she has a language disorder.


Speech

is the verbal means of communicating. Speech consists of the following:

Articulation/Phonological Processes

Articulation is the process by which sounds, syllables, and words are formed when your tongue, jaw, teeth, lips, and palate alter the air stream coming from the vocal folds. A phonological process disorder is a simplification of the sound system that also affects intelligibility. .

Voice and Resonance

Voice is the function of the vocal folds and breathing to produce sound.The way airflow for speech is shaped as it passes through the oral (mouth) and nasal (nose) cavities is referred to as resonance.

Fluency

The rhythm of speech (e.g., hesitations or stuttering can affect fluency).

When a person is unable to produce speech sounds correctly or fluently, or has problems with his or her voice, then he or she has a speech disorder. Children who stutter, and people whose voices sound hoarse or nasal have speech impairments.