Congenital dysphasia is a developmental speech disorder that is not the result of trauma or stroke, but is present from birth and is characterized by a difficulty speaking or understanding spoken words. Although there are therapies that can help those who suffer from congenital dysphasia, they are often costly, so it is important for those who qualify for government benefits to speak with a home healthcare services provider about their eligibility for free healthcare services.
What is Congenital Dysphasia?
Dysphasia is a language disorder that makes it difficult to speak, read, write, or understand spoken words and is generally divided into the following three subcategories:
- Congenital dysphasia, which is a term used to describe an almost complete failure to communicate;
- Developmental dysphasia, which is associated with later onset and less pervasive impairment; and
- Acquired dysphasia, which occurs following a specific neurological interruption, including trauma, accident, infection, or tumor.
Most cases involving childhood dysphasia fall under the category of congenital dysphasia, which is generally characterized by a difficulty in developing or using language in the absence of deafness, emotional disorders, or brain damage ((Denays, et al., 1989).
A surprising number of children are born with compromised brain mechanisms that can significantly slow language development. The most common congenital conditions affecting language and potentially contributing to dysphasia include:
- Spina bifida, which is associated with malformations of the spine and brain;
- Systemic metabolic disorders, which result in the accumulation of metabolites in the bloodstream and can cause brain disruption that manifests as a speech or language deficit; and
- Unilateral congenital pathology, which includes damage to one side of the brain, lesions, or congenital malformations.
Symptoms of Dysphasia
As a language and speech disorder, congenital dysphasia involves a wide range of symptoms, including:
- Speaking in incomplete sentences;
- Substituting one word or one sound for another;
- Failing to understand the conversations of others;
- Using unrecognizable words;
- Being unable to decipher written information; and
- Being unable to differentiate between certain words and sounds.
Ultimately, the severity of the issues faced by someone who has been diagnosed with dysphasia depends on the area of the brain that is being primarily affected and the extent of the cell damage in that area. These factors will also have a significant effect on which types of therapies and treatment regimens are used by patients.
Diagnosis and Treatment
To confirm a diagnosis of dysphasia, a doctor will conduct a physical and neurological examination and may also request an MRI. Generally, the results of these tests will dictate the types of therapies that a patient will require. There are certain kinds of treatment, however, that are particularly common amongst congenital dysphasia patients, including speech and language therapy, which can help improve a person’s ability to communicate by:
- Restoring lost language;
- Teaching that individual how to compensate for undeveloped language skills; and
- Identifying other means of communicating.
A number of clinical trials are also currently being conducted to study the effect of certain drugs in the treatment of dysphasia, including medications that improve blood flow in the brain, replace depleted chemicals, and enhance the brain’s ability to recover and heal. Unfortunately, gaining acceptance into these clinical trials can be expensive, as are the medications currently being tested. Similarly, speech and language therapies can also be costly, especially for patients who require long-term care, which applies to many of those who are suffering from congenital dysphasia. In these cases, obtaining financial assistance can make all the difference in ensuring that a loved one receives the care that he or she deserves.
Call Our Home Healthcare Services Team Today
If you or a loved one were diagnosed with congenital dysphasia and you have questions about your eligibility for free home healthcare services, please call a member of the United Energy Workers Healthcare team at 888-298-8126 today. We have offices across the country and so can direct you to the most convenient location in your area, so please don’t hesitate to call or contact us online at your earliest convenience.
Denays, R., Tondeur, M., Foulon, M., Verstraeten, F., Ham, H., Piepsz, A., & Noël, P. (1989, November). Regional brain blood flow in congenital dysphasia: studies with technetium-99m HM-PAO SPECT. Retrieved October 15, 2019, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/2809746.