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How Language Development Services Can Improve Communication For Autistic Children With Apraxia

Early diagnosis is crucial for the best outcome for children with autism. It is ideal to diagnosis a child with this condition by the age of 18 months. Autism is a mental condition that starts in early childhood. It causes delays in many areas of development, such as interacting with people, playing, and learning to talk. 

Apraxia is one of those conditions that affects many autistic children. This condition makes it difficult to use the lips, mouth, tongue, and jaw to create clear speech sounds. Every time an apraxia child says a word, it will sound different. The inconsistency makes it hard for even the parents to understand what their child is saying. Read on to find out how language development services can help your child communicate.

Alternative Methods Of Communication

Many speech-language pathologists suggest using a variety of methods to communicate. Examples of this type of communication are voice-generating computer tablets and picture cues. Some people worry that such supportive devices may become a substitute to speaking. However, alternative communication does the opposite. It encourages speech while your child works on their verbal skills.

Gesture Cuing

Visual gesture cuing shows your child how the lips form to say a sound. This approach can be done by the therapist or parent. It is done by looking at your child while touching your mouth to say the sound. This cue draws your child's attention to your mouth and how the lips form the sound.

Autistic children tend to be visual learners. However, your child must be able to pay attention to visual cues and imitate them.

Core Vocabulary

Building your child's core vocabulary can help him or her with speaking. The core vocabulary should consist of a few words chosen by the therapist and family. The choice of words should be based on everyday use and things that are important to your child. They should also be easy for your child to imitate depending on his or her skill level.

Your therapist will practice these words with your child using structured activities. You can use the words with your child as he or she encounters the action, person, or object throughout the day.

Your child can start language development therapy after being diagnosed with apraxia. A speech-language pathologist will also develop a personalized treatment plan for your child. A team of speech and occupational therapists will work with you and your child to help with effective communication. For more information, contact local professionals like Evergreen Speech & Hearing Clinic, Inc.