Speech Therapy

Mixed Receptive-Expressive Disorder – Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis and Treatment

When a child has difficulty expressing himself or herself using spoken language, then he or she is diagnosed to have mixed receptive-expressive language disorder. Also, the child diagnosed with the disorder has difficulty understanding what others are saying. Read on to know more about the causes, symptoms, diagnosis and treatment of mixed receptive-expressive disorder.

Mixed Receptive-Expressive Disorder – Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis and Treatment

Causes of Mixed Receptive-Expressive Disorder

The exact cause of this disorder is still unknown. Researchers are still conducting studies to determine whether environmental or biological factors are involved in the development of this disorder or not. If any damage to the brain occurs, then one acquires this disease. Brain damage can be a result of seizures, traumatic head injury or during a stroke. The symptoms of acquired type of mixed receptive-expressive disorder most frequently depends on severity of the damage and damaged parts of the patent’s brain.

Symptoms of Mixed Receptive-Expressive Disorder

The symptoms of this disorder are almost similar to the symptoms of expressive language disorder. From one affected child to another, the signs and symptoms of the disorder keeps varying. This disorder generally is characterized by a child’s problem with spoken communication. However, the child does not face difficulty in pronouncing words, which is prevalent in phonological disorder. He or she has problems in recalling words, using proper grammar and constructing coherent sentences. They are unable to communicate their wants, needs and thoughts at the same level as their peers.

Additionally, a child with mixed receptive-expressive language disorder has a very limited vocabulary when compared with children of his or her age. He or she also has significant problems in understanding what others are saying to him or her. This lack of not understanding things can result in failure to follow given directions or inappropriate responses. A few people think that these children are deliberately being obnoxious or stubborn, although this is not the case. The reality is that they simply don’t understand what is actually being said to them. Apart from these problems, these children face difficulties in understanding specific terms like spatial terms, complex sentences and abstract nouns.

Diagnosis of Mixed Receptive-Expressive Language Disorder

There are basically four general criteria for diagnosing this language disorder, which is consulted by mental health professionals. According to first condition, the child is able to communicate using speech and understand spoken language at a lower intelligence level when compared to his/her peers. The second condition is the child’s difficulty with comprehension and self-expression. This creates problems for him/her in achieving academic goals or everyday routines.

If the affected child is able to understand what is being said at a normal stage of his/her development, then the condition is diagnosed as expressive language disorder. If the child has any physical problem like hearing loss or mentally retarded, then the problems with speech will be greater compared to any other handicaps the child may have. When a teacher or parent expresses concern about a child’s difficulties with spoken communication, then this disorder is mostly diagnosed. A physical examination is conducted to rule out any other existing problem like hearing loss.

Specific tests for this language disorder needs the examiner to analyze that not only the affected child communicates well than the normal standards, but he or she also faces problem in understanding speech. The diagnosis is not an easy task.

Mixed Receptive-Expressive Disorder – Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis and Treatment

Treatment for Mixed Receptive-Expressive Disorder

This language disorder should be immediately treated as soon it is identified by a specialist. For a successful outcome, an early intervention is required. The mode of treatment involves anyone who regularly interacts with the affected child like parents, siblings and teachers. One-on-one treatment that aims on language skills can be highly effective. This can be successfully involve caregivers and family members.

The speech-language pathologist can teach the affected child specific communication skills. Hence, this can enable them to interact with others effectively. If there are any persisting problems in this avenue, then can lead to behavioral problems, depression or social isolation later in their life. If children with this language disorder are diagnosed earlier, then they can benefit immensely when taught reading skills. This disorder can lead to adverse long-term academic problems. There is very little information available comparing the different methods of treating the language disorder. These treatments are most often combined.

Prognosis of Mixed Receptive-Expressive Language Disorder

One has to be aware of the fact that developmental form of this disorder does not easily resolve like the developmental form of expressive language disorder. Children with this language disorder still face difficulties in language skills. When compared to their peers, they develop these language skills at a slower rate. Hence, throughout their educational phase, they face a growing disadvantage. In adult life, a few people have serious problems with understanding others and expressing themselves effectively.

The prognosis of this language disorder depends on the location and nature of the brain damage. A few people can successfully retain their language skills in few days or months. However, for other patients, it may take years to recover. Some people can never entirely recover their ability to understand speech and expressive language function.

Prevention of Mixed Receptive-Expressive Language Disorder

As the causes of this disorder are still not known, there are not any specific ways to prevent them. Still, regular prenatal care and healthy diet during pregnancy is recommended by many doctors. As the disorder can be acquired by any injury or damage to the brain, one can be careful to prevent any type of injury to the brain. These preventive measures can include precautions like lowering the blood cholesterol level. This may prevent any chances of stroke. Also, one can wear automobile seat belts or bicycle helmets to prevent any brain damage.

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