Children develop at different speeds and learn at different paces and there is nothing wrong with that. However, there are times when, if your child is not developing as quickly as his or her peers, it can be beneficial to get a little help. This is especially true when it comes to speed. So what are some signs your preschool-aged child could benefit from speech therapy? Take a look.
Stuttering is when your child hesitates before starting to speak, or when they repeat the first syllable or two of a word several times before finally getting the first word out. It can appear in a range of severity. Some children only stutter a little bit before certain word, and other children stutter so much that they are barely able to speak.
Parents often assume stuttering will go away on its own, and sometimes this is the case. However, you are better off seeking speech therapy early on. Your child's speech therapist will focus on confidence and helping them learn where to place their tongue when they first start saying a word. They can break the habit of stuttering early, which will help your child move forward with their speech and language.
Delayed awareness of rhythm and segmenting of speech.
By the time they enter preschool, most children are speaking in sentences. They should have picked up on the skill of saying each word separately and pausing between sentences. If your child seems to blend all of their words together, ramble on without making cohesive sentences, or tie together words in a way that does not "make sense," this could be a sign of a learning difference such as dyslexia. A speech therapist can accurately give a diagnosis and provide tips for helping your child overcome these difficulties as they continue to grow and learn.
Trouble learning about letters.
In preschool, your child will learn how to identify letters, and they will learn the sounds that those letters make. If your child is struggling to associate the sounds with the letters, this could indicate an underlying learning difference affecting their speech. It is best to work with a speech therapist early on, rather than waiting to see if they catch up on their own. You may, in fact, learn that they just need a little more time, but it's worth making an appointment with the speech therapist to be sure.
Speech therapists are trained to help kids with their speech. If your child is struggling with any of the issues above, you can count on a therapist, like those at Speech Language and Hearing Associates and other locations, to help out.