What is dyslalia?
Dyslalia is a speech defect that inhibits the pronunciation of certain distinct sounds. There are four types:
- Simple: an inability to pronounce one specific sound.
- Multiple: an inability to pronounce two or more specific sounds.
- Hottentotism: a person’s words become completely unintelligible due to a stammer.
- Related: an inability to pronounce all sounds that require the same articulation.
What are the symptoms of dyslalia?
Normally, after five years of age, children can pronounce all the phonemes well and without any difficulty, although sometimes the "R" may take a little more time. From the age of five, severe difficulty to pronounce certain phonemes or words is a key symptom of dyslalia.
What are the causes of dyslalia?
The main causes of dyslalia are:
- Learning disabilities
- Hearing problems: if the child does not hear well, they learn to pronounce different sounds incorrectly.
- Structural abnormality of the speech organs: there are malformations or defects in the organs that allow us to speak, such as the palate or lingual frenulum, which interferes with our tongue movements.
Can dyslalia be prevented?
Dyslalia can potentially be prevented with speech and language therapy, singing lessons and encouraging the child to speak more. However, sometimes prevention is not possible.
What is the treatment for dyslalia?
Depending on the cause, the speech therapist or ENT specialist will propose therapy or treatment tailored to the child, which will be based on performing exercises to improve the muscles used for pronunciation and perfecting articulation, as well as breathing and expression exercises. When the cause of speech impediment is a malformation, surgical intervention may be required to correct it.