The diagnosis of a child with childhood apraxia of speech (CAS) is best performed by a licensed speech-language pathologist experienced in CAS and the principles of speech motor planning and coordination. Speech-language pathologists are prepared to differentially diagnose speech production disorders, considering the quality of speech difficulty, typical development, delay vs. disorder, etc. Young children often benefit from dynamic diagnostic therapy for some time to adequately collect and analyze a robust communication sample before a diagnosis can be determined.
Treatment of a child with CAS requires frequent, intensive and individual therapy using multi-sensory cueing (hearing, seeing and feeling). Kim integrates motor programming principles, PROMPT method and Integral Stimulation (IS) in her approach. The repetitive practice of speech targets is important. Successful outcomes happen when we combine fading strategic cues with opportunities to practice, gentle feedback and rhythm activities.
When working with a child with CAS it is important to investigate and support the child:
- social interactions and play with other children
- early literacy (reading) abilities
- language learning
- augmentative or alternative communication (AAC) system possibilities