What Are Some Signs and Symptoms of Dysarthria?


Quick Answer

The signs and symptoms of dysarthria include slurred or slow speech, inability to talk loudly, abnormal speech rhythm, and difficulty moving the tongue or facial muscles, according to Mayo Clinic. Rapid speech and a raspy or strained voice are also indications of dysarthria.

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Dysarthria is a motor-speech disorder that causes uncontrolled muscle movements in the face, respiratory system and mouth. People with dysarthria cannot control the muscles required to make normal sounds, making it difficult for others to understand them, according to Healthline.

Speech-language pathologists diagnose the condition. They determine the nature and severity of the condition by examining a patient's speech production in a variety of contexts, according to the American Speech Language Hearing Association.

There are many causes of dysarthria, and the most common include stroke, brain trauma, Bell's palsy and cerebral palsy, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, as Healthline details. Other causes of dysarthria include Parkinson's disease, Lyme disease, weakness of the tongue muscles and medications that affect the central nervous system, such as narcotics and tranquilizers.

Treatment for dysarthria depends on its cause and type. A speech-language pathologist attempts to instruct the person on how to strengthen the muscles, increase tongue and lip movements, and slow the rate of speech. In severe cases of dysarthria, speech-language pathologists use alternative means, such as simple gestures, to help patients, according to the American Speech Language Hearing Association.

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