Speech / Articulation

What are speech skills?

Articulation skills are most commonly referred to as speech skills. Articulation refers to the process of two areas of the body touching to form speech sounds. When we speak, a set of very complex and coordinated movements allow us to form sounds which are understood by others. More than one hundred muscles have to contract and relax to begin and end each syllable. Consult our age checklists to learn more about age-appropriate skills for children.

Why do some people have trouble saying speech sounds clearly?

Individuals may mishear sounds due to permanent or fluctuating hearing loss. Frequent ear infections may cause inconsistent sound perception. Other individuals may be tongue-tied, have dental or jaw problems, structural problems, cleft palate, motor speech disorders, apraxia, or neurological injury or diseases. Sometimes the origin of speech difficulties is unknown.

What are some types of speech errors?

Speech or articulation errors occur when sounds are omitted, distorted, or substituted. When an individual omits, distorts, or substitutes sounds, their speech may sound garbled or slurred. Children who misarticulate sounds may develop spelling and reading issues as they struggle to match the printed letter with their mispronounced speech sound. Individuals and adults at school, work, and in social situations may converse less with a person who is difficult to understand.

Phonological errors occur when the rules for groups or sound classes are in error. An individual may produce frontal tongue tip sounds such as “t” and “d” for all their back tongue sounds “g” and “k” (det for get, tate for take). They may produce all their blowing sounds “sh,” “ch,” “s,” “z,” as if they were stopping sounds “t”, “d” (ton for sun, doe for so). When individuals produce entire classes of sounds in error, their speech is often extremely difficult to understand, and both the speaker and listener may become very frustrated.

What can you do to improve your speech?

It’s never too late to change the way you speak. For adults, maturity and motivation often counteract long established speech muscle patterns. Speech sounds and accents may be transformed through individualized, confidential sessions at Granite Bay Speech.

Children usually develop sounds in a normal progression. For information on normal progression, please consult our age checklists to learn more about age-appropriate skills. If you feel your child has not reached the appropriate speech and language milestones for their age, we would love to consult with you. We can provide a personalized program for your family.

My son has been receiving speech in the school system for 2 years with little to no progress. They were ready to graduate him and stop speech services because they didn't understand the problem. We have been seeing Nancy for the last 9 months and I am happy to say that she figured out what the true underlying issue is, and has been making great progress. He will officially graduate in a few months, thanks to her! She is a job to work with and always has new and exciting exercises for my son. The office staff is easy and wonderful as well. We couldn't be happier!

- Jordan C.

Nancy is a great speech pathologist and even a greater person she will spend the time she needs in order to help you out she has a lot of experience and will help you with techniques in order to improve your speech. Anyone looking to get help, Nancy is the person you are looking for whether you are a child or an adult she has the tools to better your speech and get over your fear and have you talking like you have always wished for. Highly recommend you won't regret it.

Jesus R.