Developmental Language Disorder (DLD) refers to difficulties learning language and affects approximately 7% of Australian children. Those affected by DLD can have difficulties with speaking, understanding and reading – with high risk of dyslexia.
It can also have a long-term negative impact on academic learning and emotional well being but with support, children and young people with DLD can thrive.
The University of Sydney’s Communication Disorders Treatment and Research Clinic is a key contributor towards assessment, therapy, professional training and research in Developmental Language Disorders.
Associate Professor Natalie Munro and ambassador for Raising Awareness of DLD says, “Our challenge here is to raise awareness of DLD because those affected are often mistaken for being inattentive or naughty which can lead to poor self esteem and low confidence."
Teachers and parents need to recognise that like other developmental conditions, a 'cure' is not the goal of intervention. Instead, the aim should be to maximise language capacity, enhance communication and provide additional support that will reduce the longer term risks.
Katrina Gott, Speech Pathologist and manager of the University of Sydney speech pathology clinic says, “We have some terrific services for families who are concerned about their children’s communication skills. We offer diagnostics for DLD and treatment programs including writing camps, 1:1 therapy and social skill groups”.
Around the world, Developmental Language Disorder Awareness Day takes place on October 18. Raising awareness of DLD can help parents and teachers learn more about DLD and how best to support these children and young people.
For more information including fact sheets in over 20 languages, quizzes and free up to date information on Developmental Language Disorder for families, health professionals, educators and the broader community visit RADLD.org
For further local information, speech pathology assessments, therapy or research opportunities at the University of Sydney visit: Communication Disorders Treatment and Research Clinic