The Benefits of Speech Therapy in Your Child’s Development

Speech Therapy opens new doors for your child's development.

When many people think of speech therapy, they think about the literal act of speaking. While this is part of speech therapy, it also includes language disorders and social skills. Children who are non-verbal can benefit from speech therapy because they still need to be able to effectively communicate, even if it’s not with audible words. Your child may be referred for therapy if they have trouble pronouncing certain letters, are hard to understand when they speak, have difficulty understanding what others are saying, or they have other problems communicating. Speech therapists can also work with children who have feeding or swallowing disorders.

The speech therapist will work with your child to strengthen their speech muscles and learn to form sounds correctly. This can help with articulation and fluency, as well as the quality and volume of their speech. By exercising their oral muscles, it can improve swallowing and chewing which affect feeding. The speech therapist may also work on oral stimulation and sensitivity to different tastes or textures. This can really benefit picky eaters.

On the language side of things, they will work on expression as well as speaking and acting in socially appropriate ways. This can be a challenge for children with autism who may struggle with social cues or connecting words with emotions. For a variety of disorders, the therapist will model correct grammar and vocabulary help to expand your child’s vocabulary, and use books, toys, games, and other activities to enhance language development and processing. Oftentimes your child may not even realize they’re working because they’re having fun doing the different tasks.

Other Benefits of Speech Therapy

Overall, speech therapy can have a wide range of benefits that you may not have even realized. These include:

  • Developing conversational skills to improve interactions with others
  • Expressing thoughts, ideas, and needs in a more understandable way
  • Self-regulation and following rules for conversation
  • Social appropriateness in various settings and situations
  • Improved articulation so others can understand what they are saying
  • Non-verbal communication skills such as facial expressions or body language
  • Putting together words in a sentence that make sense
  • Understanding the meaning of more words and how to use them
  • Using alternative communication devices such as picture exchange communication systems or text-to-speech programs

Starting speech therapy early can help to address problems before they become more serious. This can help your child to be more successful in school, build their self-esteem, and become a more independent communicator. PediaPlex can evaluate your child for a wide range of speech and language disorders and develop a customized treatment plan to meet their needs.

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6 Comments

Bob Lowe

I didn’t realize that speech therapy also included social skills. I was under the impression that it was mainly for speaking. This is really good to know. Even as an adult, This would probably be a great benefit. I think good communication skills are vital for success.

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Tomas Killington

My son has some difficulties speaking properly. He is unable to make the correct sounds for corresponding letters, and we’re wondering what speech therapy can do for him. I didn’t realize that this treatment can provide the tools that promote self-regulation and putting together sounds and words that make sense. That seems like something my son could really use right now.

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John

I like how you pointed out that speech therapy can be helpful for children with autism since they have a hard time expressing themselves. My friend’s son is autistic, so I wonder if he’s considered finding a speech pathologist to help his development. I’ve heard that the sooner in a child’s development they receive help from a speech pathologist, the better they respond to the therapy. Is that true?

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Ashley Turns

My sister’s son has been having trouble saying his “s” sounds and “sh” sounds and so she has been looking into what kinds of things she can do to help him. So thank you for saying that speech therapy can help a child learn how to form sounds the correct way. I’ll have to tell my sister to look into speech therapy so that my nephew can have help with his articulation of words.

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Kylie Dotts

I didn’t realize that speech therapy actually had some focus on the muscles used in speech to help form correct sounds. It makes sense that language development services like this would focus on the root of the problem instead of just trying to put a band-aid on it. You would be able to see real growth and progress in your child like this because the real problem would be addressed and confidence would be built.

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Julius

It was quite informative how you said that in the language part of the speech therapy, educators will teach the children to show the right expression, as well as speak and act in socially acceptable ways. That actually sounds great! Surely it will help my younger cousin who was diagnosed with autism. He’s already seven, yet he finds it quite difficult to look people in the eyes and talk to them using the right language. I guess he does need this. Thanks for the info. I’ll inform his parents.

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