What is Verbal Dyspraxia?

Yesterday was the 2nd annual Apraxia Awareness Day, which here in the UK is known as Verbal Dyspraxia. I did mean to have a post prepared for the day itself, but better late than never! It seems like there are still a lot of people who are not familiar with Verbal Dyspraxia so it’s important to me to help spread the awareness when I can.

What is Verbal Dyspraxia?

Developmental verbal dyspraxia (DVD), also known as childhood apraxia of speech (CAS) and developmental apraxia of speech (DAS), is an inability to utilize motor planning to perform movements necessary for speech during a child’s language learning process

– Definition from the Wikipedia page on Developmental Verbal Dyspraxia


In simple terms, this means that a child with Verbal Dyspraxia has a problem with the brain wiring between their brain and the muscles in their mouth, so they know what they want to say but their brain is not able to send the right signals for them to produce the correct sounds to form the words and sentences that they require. It’s different from speech delay because it’s a neurological condition, so it’s classified as a speech disorder. It sometimes comes alongside DCD which is Developmental Coordination Disorder or Developmental Dyspraxia. A lot of children with Verbal Dyspraxia also have sensory issues or Autistic traits but Verbal Dyspraxia is not an Autistic Spectrum Disorder in and of itself. Mr T has diagnosis of both ASD and DVD.

This is the post I wrote last year for Apraxia Awareness Day, and it’s so encouraging for me to look back at that and think how far Mr T has come since then. He is talking now!! He’s not always clear at all, and outsiders still find it hard to understand him, but he is talking! Finally at 4.5 years old we are able to have some short conversations with him, and it’s amazing.

It’s taken him (and me, and his speech therapists!) a lot of hard work to get to this stage, and he still has a fair way to go but he’s making great progress at the moment. I just hope he continues to progress like this once he is in school in September.

If you’re reading this as a parent of a child worried about possible Verbal Dyspraxia, or with a child who has recently been diagnosed with this disorder, personally my sincere advice to you would be to invest in private speech therapy with a good speech therapist who specialises in Verbal Dyspraxia. (You can just go for an assessment initially) It is not easy to get this therapy on the NHS. If you can, then definitely grab the chance and take it! But private therapy although obviously not cheap, is worth it. You might be able to go for slightly less frequent sessions and get work to do at home in between, which is what we do to cut down on having to travel every week and it works for us.


This year I’m marking Apraxia Awareness Day here on the blog by offering a giveaway for a bundle of speech therapy apps from Therapy Box. They have offered one In The Playroom reader the chance to win a bundle of the following:

Speech Therapy Apps from Therapy Box

Scene & Heard – a visual scene display communication tool

Sort This Out Pack – a fun educational game designed to work on skills required for categorisation

Minimal Pair Pack – a game to work on phonetic sound discrimination

Odd One Out Pack – a game designed to work on semantic reasoning skills

These look like great bundles, each one designed to help work on a specific set of skills. Each bundle is £49 so this is a great opportunity to win them all!

I have not tried these particular apps, as I am going to be reviewing the new AAC app ChatAble from Therapy Box instead. Check back on the blog for that in a couple of weeks, as we still need to get to grips with it and test it thoroughly!

This giveaway is open worldwide.

Enter via the Rafflecopter below:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Polite Notice: Please can you only enter if you have an actual need for the apps i.e you have a child with speech and language difficulties, you work in speech therapy etc

What is Verbal Dyspraxia? Find out with the Apraxia Awareness link up

If you have any posts relating to Apraxia, please link them up below. I’d love to read them! This linky is cohosted by several other bloggers so the posts will be displayed across all of these blogs: (which are all great places to look for more resources and Apraxia / Verbal Dyspraxia posts!)

SLP Mommy of Apraxia

Trust Me, I’m a Mom

Mommy Square

In The Playroom


The iMums


If there is anyone reading who needs help finding resources or support for Verbal Dyspraxia in their area, feel free to email me or leave me a message on Facebook – I can pass you on the details for a couple of groups. 

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38 thoughts on “What is Verbal Dyspraxia?”

  1. I am a SLP and work with lots of kids that have Apraxia or it’s highly suspected. It would be a blessing to have these apps to help our patients. It’s a non-profit hospital with little-to-no budget for apps. Thanks 🙂

  2. my son has severe SSLI and is currently attending a salt nursery before he moves to school. we would love some speech apps to help him more as he has a few but we are unable to afford more 🙁

  3. My grandson and granddaughter would benefit a lot from these apps. Two children in one family with speech difficulties is not easy.

  4. what a brilliant idea, I work with children with learning difficulty’s some of which have speech problems, I would love to give these a try.

  5. I am a life long stutter/stammer and without speech therapy in my early years I would never have been able to use the telephone confidently, or work in some of the jobs I have had in the past, so I think these apps can only be a good thing as sadly, there are not many speech therapists available to children through the NHS.

  6. These are a great idea. Something like this would really help at the minute, our son doesn’t have many words at all and it is worrying, especially when friends tell me how much their children say.

  7. looks helpful. my children have autism, one is verbal but struggles with communication and the other is non verbal, so we are exploring different ways to communicate with them. apps seem a good way to engage

  8. My son is going for a hearing test on Thursday to rule out anything wrong with his ears as Nursery have said he is falling behind on his speech. He’s also been referred to our local speech therapist but they are get to get back to us to see if he need any help or whether he’s just a bit behind and will get there on his own.

    Its quite a horrid time actually and this app sure as **** can’t hurt can it? 🙂
    Rachael Jess recently posted…Letters to my Son – Potty TrainingMy Profile

  9. My son is currently having speech therapy and awaiting an appointment with a specialist, these apps sound fantastic!

  10. My son is 2yrs 4 months and says about 6 words. He struggles to communicate his needs and screams all the time. Very stressful for all of us. This would be an absolute god send to help him

  11. My 5 year old son has DVD and we cannot get therapy for his expressive language which is also impacted. He loves technology and I hope these apps could help.

  12. My 14 year old ‘s speach has really improved when he slows down!! But he still finds some words really difficult, the other day he was telling me about a friend at school who has a jacuzzi but he could only say cajuzzi and it took a while for me to work out what word he was saying.

  13. These apps sound brilliant, my son gets really frustrated while trying to get out certain words. He starts nursery tomorrow so we are looking forward to what the staff have to say about his speech x

  14. Both my niece and nephew have speech problems. My sister worries constantly about their progress and worries that they will be disadvantaged. I’d love to be able to give this thoughtful prize to my sister .. just to let her know, she’s not alone.

  15. My son went through a speech therapy program and it has really helped him with being able to communicate better. He still faces some challenges, but it is much better.

  16. Would love these for my grandson who has been having speech therapy for several years but now at school is becoming more aware of what he can’t say and is being teased about it.

  17. We’ve had a couple of speech therapy sessions with our 3 year old which didn’t teach us anything new really 🙁 We are awaiting further referrals as we “speak”

  18. these apps look perfect for my child with autism as he has severe language and communication development and would help him out with his communication skills and expressing his wants and needs


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