Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Understanding language disorders...

As many of you may know both Mitch & Harry have been diagnosed with severe language disorders and are considered in the first percentile for their speech and language (meaning out of 100 children - 99 children would score higher than them). This is very hard for many people to understand because both boys are chatty, bright and responsive. Even doctors have questioned the diagnosis... which sometimes make it hard for us to know what to believe. But the reality is that while both boys are beautiful, loving and intelligent they do have difficulty with both expressive and receptive speech.

Here is a brief description of language disorders in children by Dr McDowell a leading developmental paediatrician...
(you may want to turn the volume up)



Here is the same doctor discussing whether language disorders can be cured...


And how inadequate speech services are within Australia...


And finally what this can mean when the child grows up...


While it may seem a potentially grim diagnosis - neither Kevin or myself view it as such. We are extremely fortunate that the boys' language disorder has been diagnosed so early and that despite their difficulties they are very happy to talk (and talk and talk). We view our role as helping the boys to develop strategies to assist them with their language. Although the boys do very well themselves. Mitch typically inserts phrases he knows will garner favourable feedback... "you are my BEST friend" and "I love you so much". And Harry talks about things he understands like numbers, the alphabet and colours - he even types his name out on the computer now. These are the ways they have already learnt to cope when their language lets them down. Best of all they are happy boys which we hope will continue as they face the challenges ahead.

Phew, now if you have managed to follow all of this my thanks :-)
Hugs,
Lisa

4 comments:

RhondaLue said...

Those were great clips. My little speechie kid is doing better and thankfully got lots of intervention as a baby through early intervention and then speech preschool as well as private speech therapy added in. Right now he's just getting once/week speech at school and it seems to be ok. He may have a lisp for a long time but that's small potatoes.

Lisa - Mum to Mitch and Harry said...

Thanks Rhonda.
It certainly is a complcated journey with language and speech disorders - but it is made easier when we get the help needed.

Hugs,
Lisa

Jodi Devine said...

I couldn't hear the clips because of the background music. I am very interested in the links Lisa.
Jodi x

Lisa - Mum to Mitch and Harry said...

Hi Jodi,
You can just scan down and turn off the music player :-)

Hugs,
Lisa