Childhood Apraxia of Speech (CAS) is a speech disorder in which a child has difficulty producing sounds, syllables and words correctly.
This makes a child’s speech unclear or ‘muffled’. Consequently, even though a child may know what they want to say, they cannot retrieve the ‘motor plan’ (produce the correct sounds in words) which will enable them to say it.
There are multiple symptoms of CAS and this is not a complete list. Not all symptoms need to be present, nor can any one symptom identify the disorder:
- little or no babbling in infancy; few consonants; late talker
- first words (such as ‘dad’) may emerge on time, but the growth of vocabulary is slow or nonexistent
- over-use of non-verbal communication (e.g., pointing and grunting).
- slow, effortful, or halting speech; the child sometimes seems to struggle or ‘grope’ for words
- may be able to say a word, but is then unable to repeat it on command
- inconsistent productions – the child may say words differently from one day to the next and be able to use particular sounds in one word, but not in others
- the understanding of words and language (receptive language) is better than the production of language (expressive language)
A speech pathology assessment is required to determine if a child has CAS.
For further information visit http://www.apraxia-kids.org/
If you have concerns about your child’s speech, contact us.