DLD Awareness Day Friday 20th October 2023
Probably the most common childhood condition you’ve never heard of (Professor Courtney Norbury)
DLD (Developmental Language Disorder) is a relatively new term. It is used to describe a severe ongoing difficulty with talking and/or understanding what other people say – and for which there is no obvious cause.
DLD tends to run in families which suggests a genetic link. It is not caused by anything parents have or have not done, but if your child has a difficulty with talking and/or understanding, you can do a lot to help.
When children are young, there are always adults around to talk for them, so a delay or difficulty with talking or understanding isn’t always taken seriously. But language is so fundamental to learning and nearly all aspects of adult life that a severe ongoing disorder can exclude young people and adults from many everyday activities. Appropriate early intervention is key to optimising the life chances of children with DLD.
DLD is a very common condition affecting 7.5% of children – that’s an average of 2 or 3 in every classroom. But it is little known and poorly understood. The reasons for this are unclear but we know that DLD is often confused with other conditions. People tend to assume that language difficulties will be obvious, but they are often quite subtle and hard to recognise without experience or training. Furthermore, children with DLD are often very good at ‘masking’ their difficulties.
If you think that your child might have DLD, please see your class teacher, or Miss Shaw, or myself Mrs Towle.
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