Language is used for talking to and with others, to signal needs, intentions, feelings, and thoughts. Language is also used for self-talking (thinking), and for controlling and directing one's own behavior as well as for controlling and directing the behavior of others. It involves the understanding and use of words and word combinations.
A language disorder is the impairment in the ability to understand and/or use words in context, both verbally and nonverbally. Some characteristics of language disorders include improper use of words and their meanings, inability to express ideas, inappropriate grammatical patterns, reduced vocabulary and inability to follow directions. One or a combination of these characteristics may occur in children who are affected by language learning disabilities or developmental language delay. Children may hear or see a word but not be able to understand its meaning. They may have trouble getting others to understand what they are trying to communicate. An evaluation will identify your child's difficulty understanding and/or using language. Therapy will help your child learn to use language appropriately and accurately.