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Language-Based Disorders

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According to the Association of Speech-Language-Hearing Assocation (ASHA), language-based disorders are characterized by problems with age-appropriate reading, writing, and/or spelling. Be mindful that this disorder does not have to do with a person's intellectual ability, as most people diagnosed with LBD have average to superior intelligence.

What Causes Language-Based Disorders?

Language-based disorders are often passed from parent to child through genes. It is often related to specific language problems.

Signs and Symptoms


In preschool aged children (ages 3 to 5 years old), some common signs of language trouble are with understand and talking:

Problems with Understanding (also called "Receptive Language")

  • Understanding what gestures mean
  • Following directions
  • Answering questions
  • Identifying objects and pictures
  • Taking turns when talking with others

Problems with Talking (also called "Expressive Language")

  • Asking questions
  • Naming objects
  • Using gestures
  • Putting words together into sentences
  • Learning songs and rhymes
  • Using correct pronouns, like "he" or "they"
  • Knowing how to start a conversation and keep it going

Some children may also have trouble with early reading and writing skills:

  • Holding a book right side up
  • Looking at pictures in a book and turning pages
  • Telling a story with a beginning, a middle, and an end
  • Naming letters and numbers
  • Learning the alphabet
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