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Developmental Language Disorder (DLD)

What is a Developmental Language Disorder (DLD) 

Developmental Language Disorder (DLD) is a common but often misunderstood condition that affects a child's ability to understand and use language. Children with DLD have difficulty with the comprehension and/or expression of spoken or written language, despite having normal hearing and nonverbal intelligence.

 

Signs and Symptoms of DLD

  • Delayed onset of language development.

  • Limited vocabulary and difficulty finding the right words.

  • Difficulty understanding and following directions.

  • Poor grammar and sentence structure.

  • Difficulty organizing thoughts and ideas.

  • Challenges with reading and writing.

Causes of DLD: The exact cause of DLD is not known, but it is believed to involve a combination of genetic, neurological, and environmental factors. Differences in brain structure and function related to language processing may contribute to the development of DLD.

Diagnosis and Treatment: Diagnosing DLD involves a comprehensive evaluation by a speech-language pathologist (SLP) to assess the child's language skills. Treatment for DLD typically involves speech-language therapy to improve language comprehension and expression. Therapy may include activities to build vocabulary, improve grammar and sentence structure, and enhance overall communication skills.

Support for Families: Families play a crucial role in supporting children with DLD. It's important to create a language-rich environment at home, provide opportunities for your child to practice language skills, and work closely with your child's SLP to reinforce therapy goals.

With early intervention, speech-language therapy, and support from family and professionals, children with DLD can improve their language skills and succeed academically and socially. If you have concerns about your child's language development, seek help from a qualified SLP for an evaluation and appropriate intervention.

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