Saturday, May 24, 2014

May is Better Speech and Hearing Month

As a speech-language pathologist, it would be a shame not to mention that May is Better Speech and Hearing Month!  The American Speech and Hearing Association promotes better speech and hearing all year long, but May is dedicated to awareness of communication disorders.  Nearly 1 in 6 people suffer from communication disorders and the number of Americans with hearing loss has doubled in the last 30 years (ASHA, 2014).  That means that nearly 40 million Americans have some sort of speech and language disorder.The key to treating communication disorders and hearing loss is early detection.  What are some signs to look for?
In Children:
      if they don’t respond to sound or recognize faces
      If they are not making any sounds by nine months
      if they seem frustrated
      if they are not able to follow directions
      if they are not understood by family and peers
      If they are not able to follow directions
       School Age:
      if they are not understood by teachers or strangers, or are embarrassed by their speech
      if they have trouble putting words into the right order (spoken or written)
In Adults:
-          severe repetition of sounds or words (signs of stuttering)
-          inability to find the right word or slurred words (signs of a stroke)
-          asking for repetition (signs of a hearing loss)

If you suspect that someone has a communication disorder, it is best to consult a speech and language pathologist.  They will provide a screening and make recommendations for treatment options.  Concerns about possible strokes and/or hearing loss should be brought to your primary care physician.
While communication disorders are very common, they are also often treatable.  Early detection is the best key to success.  It never hurts to ask a professional for their opinion or advice!
For more information about early detection of speech and hearing problems, please see:

Valerie J Connor, MA CCC-SLP

ASHA (2014).  The prevalence and incidence of hearing loss in adults.  Retrieved from


steven stephen said...

Thanks for this awesome post. You are great man and always do something unique for us. It is discussed on various outlets of the media and in no time, they move on to the next topic of the day. Truth be told, genetics health information prescription drugs affects everyone from the young to the old, the professional, the student, the preacher, etc. It takes it's toll on many lives.

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