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Speech sounds

As children learn to talk they learn to use all of the different speech sounds of their language. Some children can be slower in developing a range of speech sounds than their peers and some children can have specific difficulties in learning to use sounds correctly.

You might think your child has difficulties with speech sounds if:

  • You struggle to understand most of what your child says
  • Your child uses a very limited range of speech sounds
  • It is significantly more difficult to understand your child than other children their age

Guidance and helpful information

Encouraging communication skills from a young age is very important. You can help and support your child’s communication as you do everyday activities and play together.

Please check out the toolkits to the right for help and advice as to how you can help your child before deciding whether a referral into the service is necessary. These toolkits provide advice on how to spot difficulties your child might be having with talking and using language and give advice on activities you can do at home with your child. You should select the toolkit for the right age group of your child. Advice for a preschool aged child can be found in the toolkits for ‘talking and using language’. There are also web links that you may find useful.

If your health or educational professional has made any recommendations about exercises that you can do with your child while you are waiting, it is important that you keep these going.

If you require further guidance and advice you can speak to a Speech and Language Therapist on 0300 247 0090 (Mon – Fri 9-5pm).

How we can help

Speech and Language Therapists are able to assess and identify your child’s areas of strength and their difficulties with speech sounds. Working in close partnership with parents/carers and education staff we provide advice on how to support your child and maximise the clarity of their speech.

Research has shown that outcomes for children with language difficulties in school are improved when goals are embedded in the child’s everyday environment.

How to refer

Visit the Single Point of Access (SPA) page for information on the referral process.

If you require further guidance and advice you can speak to a Speech and Language Therapist by calling the SPA on 0300 247 0090 (Mon – Fri 9-5pm).

Useful links and resources

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