Parents Unaware of Warning Signs, Importance of Early Intervention Parents are generally not aware of the early warning signs of communication disorders, nor do they recognize the benefits of early treatment, according to an ASHA poll of communication professionals. In conjunction with the results of the national poll, ASHA released a broadcast public service announcement encouraging parents to seek ... News in Brief
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News in Brief  |   July 01, 2018
Parents Unaware of Warning Signs, Importance of Early Intervention
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Special Populations / Early Identification & Intervention / News in Brief
News in Brief   |   July 01, 2018
Parents Unaware of Warning Signs, Importance of Early Intervention
The ASHA Leader, July 2018, Vol. 23, 8. doi:10.1044/leader.NIB2.23072018.8
The ASHA Leader, July 2018, Vol. 23, 8. doi:10.1044/leader.NIB2.23072018.8
Parents are generally not aware of the early warning signs of communication disorders, nor do they recognize the benefits of early treatment, according to an ASHA poll of communication professionals.
In conjunction with the results of the national poll, ASHA released a broadcast public service announcement encouraging parents to seek help if they have concerns about their child’s speech-language or hearing abilities.
The number-one barrier to early identification of communication disorders is lack of awareness about the warning signs among parents (identified by 46 percent of respondents), in the poll of more than 1,100 ASHA member audiologists and speech-language pathologists. Almost 70 percent say parents of young children are not aware of the early warning signs of speech-language disorders, and 32 percent say that, on average, the symptoms of hearing loss are going undetected in children for a year or longer.
More than half (56 percent) of poll respondents say parents are not aware that early intervention can decrease the cost and duration of treatment.
In other survey results:
  • Only 12 percent of respondents say parents are generally acting within six months of first observing symptoms of a speech-language delay, and 20 percent are doing so for hearing difficulties.

  • Most respondents (70 percent) say parents of young children don’t fully appreciate how vital everyday communication—talking, reading, singing—is to their child’s development.

  • Respondents are optimistic, with 68 percent expecting public awareness to improve over the next five years.

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July 2018
Volume 23, Issue 7