Speech Characteristics in a Person with Cerebral Palsy
Poor muscle control can make the speech of the child with cerebral palsy slow, slurred and sometimes unclear.
Children with cerebral palsy, without associated intellectual disability or hearing loss, can understand speech and language like a child with normal development. However, owing to the poor muscle controls, the child struggles to speak out.
The muscles involved in speech functions include tongue, vocal cords or voice box, chest muscles used for breathing, cheek muscles, pharynx and soft palate. Due to the lack of muscle control, functions like swallowing, saliva control and breathing are the difficulties experienced by the child. This difficulty extends to the coordination of muscles movements for speaking out the sounds and words, and the child is not able to express his or her needs, wants and feelings.
Some children may not be able to use their facial muscles to speak at all while some can manage to speak in a slow and slurred manner. Their speech may also be fast and jerky. Some children use gestures and sign language to communicate their needs.
- Definition of Cerebral Palsy - (http://cerebralpalsy.org/about-cerebral-palsy/what-is-cerebral-palsy/)
- Types of Cerebral Palsy - (http://cerebralpalsy.org/about-cerebral-palsy/types/)
- Augmentative and alternative communication - (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Augmentative_and_alternative_communication)