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The aim of this paper was to access speech impediment among children: the causes and challenges. A speech impediment is a condition that impacts an individual’s ability to speak fluently, correctly, or with a clear resonance or tone. Individuals with speech disorders have problems creating understandable sounds or forming words, leading to communication difficulties. Speech-language disorders are the most common of the childhood disabilities that affect thousands of preschoolers. The inability to articulate speech sounds correctly could be caused by biological factors such as brain damage, damage to the nerves controlling the muscles used in speech, or gross abnormalities of the oral structures like a cleft palate. The effect of a speech impediment cannot be comprehended as it affects a child's communication, which can hinder connections with others. Often, individuals who struggle with language will have a tougher time making and maintaining friendships. The paper reviewed the concept of speech impediment, the prevalence, the causes and symptoms, the effect, the diagnosis, the test, the treatment, and the prevention of speech impediment in children. On the same basis, the paper concluded that "the study concluded that speech impediment is the most frequent sensory deficit in human populations, affecting millions of people in the world. A child with a speech disorder may have difficulty interpreting speech sounds, often producing a reduced ability to communicate, a delay in language acquisition, economic and educational disadvantage, and social isolation and stigmatization. A speech impediment is a sign of physical or developmental differences. Left untreated, a speech impediment can make it difficult for children to learn to read and write. Children with speech impediments might also have trouble socializing. One of the recommendations made was that education boards should organize sensitization programs on the teaching and socialization of pupils with speech and language disorders.

ATAKPA, Arit Okonobong, Ph.D & Justina Ngozi OWUSHI
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