At the Children’s Health Center of Capital Institute of Pediatrics (hereinafter referred to as “Capital Institute of Pediatrics”), there is such a special clinic – the Language and Speech Clinic, which is the first professional clinic in China to open and diagnose and treat problems related to children’s language and speech development.
What are the manifestations of language and speech disorders in children and how to intervene? How to treat and train children who stutter? What time points should be paid attention to in children’s language intervention? Wang Jianhong, deputy chief physician of the Health Care Department of Seoul Children’s Hospital, introduced the speech and language clinic to Sino-Singapore Health and answered questions about the symptoms, diagnosis and treatment of speech and language disorders in children.
What are the symptoms of speech and language impairment in children?
According to Seoer Institute, language and speech disorders are common developmental disorders in childhood, which can affect children’s future reading, writing, learning and social skills.
Language development delays and disorders are mainly characterized by abnormal language development in children, and language understanding or language expression lags behind the language level of children of the same age; speech disorders are abnormalities in clarity, fluency, and intelligibility in the process of language expression, which mainly include speech disorders, Voice disorders and fluency disorders.
“In clinical work, children often come to the doctor because of ‘poor speaking’, but this kind of ‘poorness’ requires analysis of the specific situation. The content of the child’s speech is not good and the expression is relatively simple. This is a language problem, and the pronunciation is Unclear and unfluent are speech problems and require specific evaluation for different issues.” Wang Jianhong introduced to Sino-Singapore Health.
Wang Jianhong said that problems such as children’s delayed speech, lagging behind in language understanding, reading and oral expression, unclear pronunciation and lack of fluency are all within the scope of speech and language clinic diagnosis and treatment.
How to intervene in children’s language and speech disorders?
Wang Jianhong suggested that for developing children, if parents are unsure about their language and speech development, they should go to clinical outpatient clinics for evaluation and screening, and intervene early in case of abnormal development.
She said that for children with normal language development, parents can imitate picture books with their children in daily life, read aloud, and narrate stories or plots after reading to improve their language skills. Of course, age-appropriate host classes and reading classes that some children participate in can also improve their language expression or understanding abilities to a certain extent.
She said that for children with “inarticulate articulation” in the outpatient clinic, they first need to rule out hearing impairment and oral malformations, and at the same time assess the child’s language development process. They also need to conduct tests on their speech problems to test which sounds the child speaks incorrectly. , what are the wrong forms, and guide parents and children how to train wrong pronunciation. The training of incorrect pronunciation usually starts from a single sound, to a syllable, and then to words, words, and sentences.
She also pointed out that specific language and speech impairment is a separate neurodevelopmental disorder, but for children with autism spectrum disorder or other neurodevelopmental disorders, language and speech impairment is one of the manifestations, which is not only Children need to be comprehensively evaluated, and their language, cognition, behavior, etc. need to be systematically rehabilitated.
Wang Jianhong said that in the diagnosis and treatment of speech and language clinics, it is very important not only to intervene and treat children’s symptoms, but also to explore the causes, which requires comprehensive assessment and clinical guidance of children.
According to Seoul Institute, children’s language and speech development will be affected by various factors, and the causes are complex, involving multiple professional disciplines such as child health, otolaryngology, neurology, and rehabilitation. The standardized diagnosis and treatment process is to find Causes, clear diagnosis, and reasonable guidance for intervention.
How to treat and train children who stutter?
Wang Jianhong said that for children who stutter, it is very important for parents and children themselves to monitor stuttering behavior in their lives. Through monitoring, we can understand whether there are lags, dragging sounds, and repetitions in the child’s language expression and the frequency of occurrence, and whether it is accompanied by physical changes. For example, whether the expression is not fluent, whether it is accompanied by eye-squeezing, shoulder shrugging, mouth and facial distortion, etc., so as to This determines the degree of stuttering in a child. At the same time, it is necessary to understand the duration of stuttering. Usually the above symptoms last for more than half a year, and stuttering is considered present.
She introduced that the mechanism of stuttering is very complex, and specific intervention methods should also be combined with the children’s own characteristics. If it is a “real” stutter, that is, there is a pause between words, or a stuck after a specific pronunciation, which lasts for a long time and has poor self-control adjustment, then speech training is needed; if it is a developmental stutter, it occurs intermittently. , is short-lasting and can self-regulate, it requires parents to communicate and interact with their children more, create a state of natural communication, improve the children’s pragmatic ability, let the children understand what language to use under what circumstances, and enhance the ability to extract words. Parents also need to describe more to help their children expand their vocabulary.
Wang Jianhong emphasized that when children have problems expressing themselves fluently, some parents will criticize their children or ask their children to repeat fluent words, which may have a psychological impact on the children, causing them to disapprove of themselves or withdraw socially. . “Parents should set a good example, give their children reasonable guidance, and do not criticize their children for speaking fluently.”
She also pointed out that if there is only one child in the family and the others are adults or older children, the family’s language skills and speaking speed are much higher than those of the children, which may create a “high demand” language environment. For example, if the family members speak relatively fast, but the children’s speech speed is not that fast, they will be affected by the surrounding language environment and automatically speed up their speech. However, the children’s ability to process and extract language or speech is relatively insufficient. , will cause stuttering. “So it is very important to assess the language environment of families of children who stutter.”
What time points should be paid attention to in children’s language intervention?
Wang Jianhong pointed out that some parents believe that their children will be able to speak when they grow up, or think that “elegant people are slow to speak” and do not evaluate and intervene early on language problems. If the children’s language problems persist, it will have a negative impact on their future social and academic performance. Influence.
She emphasized that the golden period for children’s language development is from 0 to 6 years old, and the best period for starting oral expression is from 0 to 3 years old. Language development problems should be discovered and intervened as early as possible in the early stages of development.
She said that during the language development period before the age of 0-1, if a child lags behind in non-verbal expression skills such as eye contact, body communication or specific vocalizations, intervention is needed to strengthen the child’s eyes, body expression and oral stimulation; In the language development period after 1 year old, if the child cannot consciously call mom and dad by 1 and a half years old, cannot say phrases by 2 years old, and has a very small vocabulary, intervention and correction are needed.
“In clinical practice, language development problems before the age of 4 are usually diagnosed as language development delay. After the age of 4, if the child still has language development problems, the child will be diagnosed as language disorder. However, screening and intervention for language development delay are recommended. We need to move forward, discover and intervene as early as possible, and don’t wait until the age of 3 or 4 to see if there is a language development problem.” Wang Jianhong said.