Articulation (pronunciation and talking) is the ability to physically move the tongue, lips, teeth and jaw to produce sequences of speech sounds, which make up words and sentences. Articulation is important to be able to produce sounds, words and sentences which are clear and can be easily understood and interpreted by others in order to be able to express basic needs and wants, right through to being able to engage in complex conversations.

Depending on the extent of the difficulties, unclear speech can impact significantly on how well a child can interact with adults and their peers and can affect the development of language and social skills. A child who is having difficulties being understood can become frustrated and angry which may lead to behavioural issues. Articulation is also important in literacy skills such as reading and spelling out of words.

We shall be assessing the following to see if your child has an articulation problem and requires help

  • case history;
  • oral mechanism examination;
  • hearing screening(if required)
  • speech sound/Single word assessment), including severity,intelligibility,stimulability,
  • spoken-language testing, including receptive and expressive language assessment,
  • phonological processing

How can you improve your child’s articulation?

  • Model correct speech
  • Avoid directly correcting your child when she makes a mistake
  • Maintain a regular flow of conversation around your child.
  • Turn off background noise in the home (e.g. television, radio, music) when engaging with your child to minimise distractions.
  • Read to the child
  • For the young child, engage in play where you model and use lots of different sounds while playing (e.g. saying “chchch” as the train passes by, “baa” goes the sheep).

Fluency refers to the smoothness or flow with which sounds, syllables, words and phrases are said when talking. When a child is not speaking fluently terms like stuttering, stammering or cluttering are often used. A child’s speech may also be dysfluent (lacking fluency) when they are trying to ‘think of what to say’ and are planning the words and sequence of words that they are going to use.
Speaking fluently is important when relaying information and socialising. The more dysfluent speech is the more difficult is it for the speaker and the listener to engage in the conversation effectively and easily. It is important for a child to have fluent speech so that they are able to get their needs and wants met and to be able to effectively express their thoughts and ideas. It can be frustrating for the child who is not fluent when they cannot get their messages across.

We do a comprehensive and individualized assessment by following steps and design the therapy program accordingly:

  • Detailed Case History
  • Consultation with family members
  • Real time analysis of speech sample
  • assessment of speech fluency (e.g., frequency, type, and duration of disfluencies; presence of secondary behaviors; speech rate; and intelligibility) in a variety of speaking tasks (e.g., conversational and narrative contexts)

How can you help to improve your child’s fluency

  • Speak slowly and calmly to your child
  • Avoid interrupting or criticizing the child
  • If your child gets stuck somewhere, don’t complete the utterance for her.Let her do it herself
  • make the family environment  as relaxed as possible
  • Maintain good eye contact with your child while talking.