Speech Language Therapy for Children with Motor Speech Disorders
Children with motor speech disorders are often unable to imitate or produce speech sounds without the use of special techniques to support their unique challenges in the area of motor learning.
Motor Speech Disorders are impairments in one or more of the motor processes that underlie speech. It is only recently that there has been emphasis placed on speech as movement and that research has focused attention on motor speech disorders in children. Motor learning theory is complex, and there are several levels of control that are discussed in the literature. Children may exhibit motor deficits in one or more of the following areas:
PROMPT® Therapy for Children with Motor Speech Disorders
In our experience at Donna Lederman, SLP, PC, the use of PROMPT therapy is highly effective in treating children with motor impairment. PROMPT focuses on the precision and highly coordinated movement patterns required for volitional control of movements for speech production. Regardless of the nature of the motor processing disorder, the use of tactual in addition to auditory input has significant impact in developing successful, consistent production of speech sounds, words and phrases.
Clinical Note: Megan
Megan has a diagnosis of mild cerebral palsy and Childhood Apraxia of Speech, and she was referred to our practice by a pediatric neurologist. At her initial visit, Megan tended to avoid participating in conversation and responding to questions. Her speech intelligibility was poor, compromised by low muscle tone, sensory processing and motor planning deficits. Megan was easily frustrated when not understood. Her PROMPT® therapy sessions have been extremely successful in helping her to produce speech sounds more accurately and to sequence syllables accurately. She quickly learned to produce her last name clearly and within 6 months, Megan's intelligibility, sentence length and confidence as a communication partner significantly improved. PROMPT therapy techniques helped Megan to stabilize her jaw and to use sensory information to guide movements for speech production. At the same time, her social use of language was markedly improved by structuring therapy sessions to include her sister in games and other social interaction activities.