Communication Disorders

Definition of Communication Disorders

Communication disorders are those that affect speech, language, and hearing. The symptoms vary depending on the particular type of communication disorder, but they generally center around problems communicating. Therapy and counseling are both helpful with the treatment of various communication disorders.

Communication disorders affect a person’s ability to communicate, causing problems with speech, language, hearing, or all three. The exact symptoms will vary according to the particular communication disorder, but they generally revolve around problems with expression. The ability to understand language (comprehension) as well as the ability to speak clearly to others are both affected to some degree. Although rare, there is also a chance that there may be convulsions with acquired aphasia – also known as Landau-Kleffner syndrome.

Types of Communication Disorders

These are the main types of communication disorders that affect most people.

  • Expressive Language Disorder - Children affected by expressive language disorder generally understands language better than they are able to communicate with others.
  • Mixed Receptive-Expressive Language Disorder - This communication disorder centers around an inability to understand language as well as problems communicating with others.
  • Phonological Disorder – Children who do not develop the ability to produce some or all sounds needed for speech are said to have a phonological disorder.
  • Acquired Aphasia with Epilepsy – Also known as Landau-Kleffner syndrome, this affects verbal communication, but also has the potential for convulsions.
  • StutteringĀ  - This is a disorder that causes people to repeat words or have problems pronouncing words correctly.
  • Unspecified Communication Disorder - When the symptoms from some or all of the communication disorders are present, it is referred to as an unspecified communication disorder because it doesn’t fit exactly under one of the other categories.

Symptoms of Communication Disorders

The exact symptoms are going to vary depending on the type of communication disorder being talked about, but in general they are going to include the following.

  • Trouble speaking or expressing complex ideas is one symptom of a communication disorder.
  • Trouble understanding others is another sign that a communication disorder may be a problem.
  • Convulsions are sometimes present with communication disorders, although they are rare.
  • Repetition of words – stuttering – is a common symptom of a communication disorder.

While all the symptoms may not be present in all people, if some do it may be a good idea to get a proper diagnosis. If a communication disorder is present, there is still hope thanks to treatment options available for this problem.

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Medical student. Interested in learning and promoting medical field.
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