You are here: Section 4 ยป 4.3.6 Download Full Resource PDF [2.5MB] Download PDF Version

4.3.6 – Voice and speech functions

Expressive speech may be affected by HIV encephalopathy. Children may speak in short sentences and not make use of many descriptive words.

Children who have cardiac or respiratory disease may become breathless even with normal speech. They may speak very quietly and may also use very short sentences with long pauses between sentences.

Potential causes of these impairments and rehabilitation interventions are shown in the table below.

Table 4.3.6: Clinical Aspects of Voice and Speech Impairments

Impairments Possible Etiologies Rehabilitation Interventions 9

Challenges with speech

HIV encephalopathy

  • Provide opportunities for children to talk i.e., engage them in conversation even if they are very young
  • Encourage children to describe what they are seeing and doing
  • Use descriptive words
  • Sing songs and rhymes
  • Read books with children. Even toddlers and preschool children should look at picture books and talk about the story and pictures.
  • If children are breathless and become tired talking, do not pressure them. Allow them to point to what they want and help them find a position in which they can breathe most easily.

9Choice of rehabilitation interventions will depend on patient assessment and available resources.