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A Beginner’s Start Guide to Childhood Apraxia of Speech (CAS).  It was designed for those families who are new to the diagnosis of CAS and/or other family members, friends, as well as others.  This section includes basic, introductory information.

  • Introduction

    Your Starting Guide To Childhood Apraxia of Speech

    If you are new to the diagnosis of Childhood Apraxia of Speech no doubt you find yourself “here” in order to educate yourself and learn how to help children with CAS as they grow and develop. We have created this guide especially for you. There is much to know about Childhood Apraxia of Speech and […]

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  • What is Childhood Apraxia of Speech?

    Childhood Apraxia of Speech (CAS) is a motor speech disorder that first becomes apparent as a young child is learning speech. For reasons not yet fully understood, children with apraxia of speech have great difficulty planning and producing the precise, highly refined and specific series of movements of the tongue, lips, jaw and palate that […]

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  • How Is CAS Different Than A Speech Delay?

    A true developmental delay of speech is when the child is following the “typical” path of childhood speech development, although at a rate slower than normal. Usually this rate is also in pace with the child’s cognitive skills. In typical speech/language development, the child’s receptive and expressive skills increase together to a large extent. What is often […]

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  • How is CAS Diagnosed?

    Because Childhood Apraxia of Speech is a communication disorder, the most qualified professional to provide assessment, evaluation, and diagnosis is a licensed speech-language pathologist (SLP).  Other professionals can be helpful and necessary at some point in time for children with CAS; however, they have not typically undergone the extensive and concentrated study and certification to […]

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  • At What Age Can A Child Be Diagnosed With CAS?

    It is not often possible for SLP’s to provide a differential diagnosis for a child under two years old.  That is because most children under age two do not have the ability to understand specific directions for tasks that would be critical to making the diagnosis.  Or the child may be unable to cooperate or […]

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  • Why is accurate diagnosis important?

    CAS is considered to be a “low” prevalence speech disorder in children.  In fact, researchers and professionals believe CAS is a rare speech disorder. That means that out of all children with speech problems, few have CAS.  It also means that other types of speech problems are much more likely in children than is CAS.  […]

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  • What Causes Childhood Apraxia of Speech (CAS) and Is It Preventable?

    First, it is important for parents to understand that there is most likely nothing that you did to “cause” your child’s speech disability.   It is not about how much you talked to your child or whether or not you had them in daycare, for example.  Your child does not have apraxia because you separated from […]

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  • Feelings, Emotions, and Coping

    No doubt if you are the parent of a child recently diagnosed with apraxia of speech, you are having many feelings and emotions in reaction to the news.  You may be feeling quite fearful about the future.  Perhaps you are wondering how this happened to your child or even if you did something to cause […]

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  • Can Extended Family and Friends Help?

    You bet!  When a child is first diagnosed with any special need, the parents or main caregiver is often overwhelmed and consumed with concerns, fears, and practical issues such as learning about or arranging for the correct type of help for the affected child.  Supportive family and friends are so meaningful and needed!  Below are […]

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  • What Kind of Help Will My Child Need?

    Children who receive an apraxia of speech diagnosis should begin speech therapy with a speech-language pathologist (SLP), preferably one that has had previous experience and success in treating apraxia.  Exactly how often the child should have speech therapy will vary according to the individual needs of each child.  Children with CAS who have severely unclear […]

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  • What Makes Speech Therapy Different for Children with Apraxia?

    As mentioned earlier, childhood apraxia of speech is a motor speech disorder, which involves a difficulty or inability to plan and program the rapid sequence and timing of movements needed to produce speech that can be understood by others.  Facial and oral structures such as the lips, tongue, soft palate, jaw and vocal folds – […]

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  • Academics, Learning, and Your Child with CAS

    While all children with CAS share common features in their speech production, they are also very different from one another. These differences extend to educational strengths and needs as well. Some research has suggested that children with CAS are at high risk for learning difficulties in phonemic awareness, reading, spelling, and written expression. Language based […]

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  • What About Sign Language, iPads, and Other Communication Forms?

    In addition to direct speech therapy, many therapists recommend the use of sign language, picture books, communication devices and other means to augment speech in the child who is not clearly understood. This approach may be called “total communication.” Having the child pair a vocal word attempt with a sign enhances the chance that the […]

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  • Other Speech and Language Issues

    Most often, children who have apraxia of speech will have other speech, language and communication challenges IN ADDITION TO, or possibly as a consequence of, the problem that they have with speech motor planning (apraxia).  Often, children with CAS will also need therapy time to work on using grammar and sentence structure (expressive language); pragmatic […]

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  • Summary: Approaches, Methods, and Goals of Speech Therapy for CAS

    Many experienced SLPs use multiple methods and approaches rather than a “one approach fits all” notion, taking many of the ideas mentioned above and using them based on the individual child’s needs. There is no one “program” that is right for every child with apraxia of speech.  Commercial products, programs, apps or kits can be […]

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  • What To Look for In an SLP for Your Child

    In the United States, speech-language pathologists (SLP) are certified by the American Speech Language and Hearing Association (ASHA).  Once the individual has successfully completed a Master’s degree in Speech Pathology, Communication Disorders and Sciences, or another relevant program; passed a national exam; and successfully completed a supervised clinical fellowship year, the professional is considered a […]

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  • What Other Professionals May Be Involved?

    If you have concerns about your child’s development in addition to their speech, other professionals may be called on to get involved in helping your child.  For example, a developmental-behavioral pediatrician can evaluate all aspects of your child’s development. Developmental Pediatrician A Developmental Pediatrician is a pediatrician with advanced training in neuro-developmental disorders and “atypical”, […]

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  • How Will My Child Do Over Time? Will My Child Speak Normally?

    The question of how one’s child will do over time and if he or she will speak normally is perhaps the biggest question of all for parents of children with CAS.  While there are no hard and fast statistics, professional articles and experienced SLPs report that most children with CAS, with appropriate help, eventually learn […]

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  • Arranging for Speech Therapy – Funding Issues

    Most families haven’t given too much thought before a diagnosis like CAS as to whether or not their health insurance policies include speech therapy and if so, under what conditions.  Additionally, most families are unaware of publicly funded and local resources that are available.  The coverage under any particular health insurance plan is as varied […]

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  • How Fast Will My Child Progress in Speech?

    First, there obviously is no “guaranteed” outcome for a child with apraxia of speech. However, many, many children can learn to speak quite well and be entirely verbal and intelligible if given early appropriate therapy and enough of it. However, children with apraxia of speech often make slower progress than children with other types of speech […]

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  • What is “Good Progress & What if Progress is Poor or Slow?

    What does “good progress” mean?  Consider this question: if, after six months of speech therapy at the rate of two or three or four times weekly, your child had two additional sounds (phonemes) and was capable of producing or could approximate two words, would you consider that the therapy was working?  Probably not.  Children with […]

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  • What Will the Future Hold?

    Parents have so many questions and worries about what the future will hold for their child.  Getting a picture of that future is challenging at best.  CASANA has now “grown” up with quite a few young people who have had the diagnosis of CAS and so we have a better perspective of the possible outcomes, […]

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  • Education, Learning & Academics and Your Child with CAS

    Parents have many questions about what will happen when their child becomes school age.  Can my child attend preschool? What kind of preschool?  Should my child go to kindergarten this year?  Educational placements for children with apraxia can cause parents a lot of stress.  In a nutshell, educational settings for children with apraxia of speech […]

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  • Educational Placement and Your Child with CAS

    Overall, the public law for special education (IDEA) is clear that children with disabilities should receive their education in the “least restrictive environment” in which their special education goals and objectives can be met – with supportive and supplemental services.  The least restrictive environment means that the child should be educated to the greatest extent […]

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  • Advocating for Your Child with CAS

    As children with CAS grow up and develop, their parents and caregivers are placed in many situations that require advocacy skills.  This advocacy may have even started before the child was diagnosed with CAS.  Perhaps you had to advocate with your child’s pediatrician in order to receive a referral for speech-language evaluation.  Receiving insurance approval for speech […]

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  • Watch Your Child with Apraxia Grow!

    Watch Your Child with CAS Grow

    You are already on the road to becoming your child’s best advocate.  But along the way, don’t forget to simply stop and enjoy your child!  He or she is still the same wonderful, beautiful child as before the diagnosis of CAS.  No matter what your child’s speech ability, he needs to have opportunities to simply […]

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  • About CASANA: Advocating for Every Child To Have a Voice

    CASANA was founded with the mission of improving the system of support in the lives of children with apraxia and their families so that each child can develop speech to their full potential.  We do this through: Increasing awareness, information, and support High quality educational experiences for parents and professionals Support for research into CAS […]

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