Many parents are extremely anxious. They’re anxious when their child isn’t developing speech in a typical way. They get even more anxious when they hear terms like apraxia of speech, which sounds pretty ominous. But it’s really just a label for a subset of children that have speech sound disorders. One of the first things I like to do when I’m meeting with a parent is to assure them that most children that have childhood apraxia of speech — and most speech disorders — are going to be talkers. Some will need more therapy than others, but I’ve met very few children with childhood apraxia who are never able to speak. Some children who have very severe apraxia when they’re young might always have some residual problems that make them sound perhaps slightly different. But they will typically be intelligible, verbal communicators.
[MUSIC PLAYING] There is a terrific organization called the Childhood Apraxia of Speech Association of North America (CASANA). This is an organization founded by a parent of a child with apraxia of speech. Her name is Sharon Gretz, and she’s just done a terrific job of providing this organization as a place where parents can go to get additional information. CASANA really fosters this partnership between speech pathologists and parents in a way that I think has been terrifically helpful. I would encourage parents who want additional information about childhood apraxia of speech to go to their website, which is apraxia-kids.org.