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Speech Sound Disorders

Speech Sound Disorders 2019-01-14T18:04:13+00:00

What are Speech Sound Disorders?

Speech sound disorders occur when children have difficulty producing various speech sounds. Children’s speech sound development typically follows an expected pattern. When children do not say sounds by the expected age, their ability to be understood in conversation can be negatively effected.

Speech sound disorders can include:

  • Articulation disorders: Difficulty with the pronunciation of various speech sounds. Children may produce substitutions or distortions of certain speech sounds.
  • Phonological disorders: Use of phonological processes or patterns of errors to simplify the production of words.
  • Motor Speech Disorders: Difficulty sequencing and coordinating the sounds in speech. Please click here for more information on Childhood Apraxia of Speech:


The cause of speech sound production errors is mainly unknown for those in the absence of any other physical or cognitive impairment. The prevalence of speech sound disorders is greater in boys than in girls. Speech sound errors can also co-occur with conditions such as hearing impairments, cleft palate, cerebral palsy, Autism Spectrum Disorder, etc.


Our Speech-Language Pathologists use standardized assessments to determine whether your child’s speech sounds are meeting developmental milestones for their age.

Treatment at Butterfly

Although some children may “outgrow” their speech sound errors, many will need direct speech therapy to learn how to correctly produce sounds. Persisting speech sound errors can negatively effect academic achievement and social participation.

After assessment, a treatment plan is developed that is specific to your child’s needs. Our Speech-Language Pathologists can teach your child the correct way to make speech sounds, first by itself, then in words, sentences and conversational speech. Parents are also taught how to practice with their child at home.

For some children, especially those with motor speech disorders, PROMPT (PROMPTS for Restructuring Oral Muscular Phonetic Targets) touch cues may be used on your child’s articulators (lips, jaw, tongue) to manually guide them through speech production.

To book an assessment or for more information on Speech Sound Disorders please email or call us at 905-206-0300.