Speech disorders or speech impediments as they are also called are a type of communication disorders. This is where ‘normal” speech is disrupted. This can mean that a child will stutter, lisp, or have vocal dysphonia. Somebody who completely unable to communicate because of a speech disorder is consider mute. There are many causes of speech disorders such as hearing loss, brain injuries, drug abuse, and physical impediments such as a cleft lip or palate. Many of these types of disorders can be treated with speech therapy, but other speech disorders require medical attention from doctor in the field of phoniatrics. In the United States, school-age children with a speech disorders are often placed in special education programs. More than 700,000 students who were placed in the school’s special education programs in the 2000-2001 school years were categorized as having a speech or language impairment. Therefore, a child speech disorder is very common in school-age children.
Suffering from a speech disorder can have negative social effects, especially for young children, even though a child speech disorder is very common in school-age children. Those children with a speech disorder can be targets of bullying because of their disorder. This bullying can lead to low self-esteem. In addition, having a speech disorder can cause some suffers to be shy and have poor public speaking skills. Did you know that some very famous people had speech disorders as children? Both James Earl Jones and Bruce Willis were stutters as children. In addition, Thomas Jefferson had a lisp as a child. Even a famous Walt Disney cartoon character has a speech disorder, Donald Duck. Therefore, even though a child speech disorder is very common, it can be overcome in later life.