Conflict of interest statement: No conflicts declared.
Psychosocial outcomes at 15 years of children with a preschool history of speech-language impairment
Article first published online: 9 JUN 2006
Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry
Volume 47, Issue 8, pages 759–765, August 2006
How to Cite
Snowling, M. J., Bishop, D.V.M., Stothard, S. E., Chipchase, B. and Kaplan, C. (2006), Psychosocial outcomes at 15 years of children with a preschool history of speech-language impairment. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 47: 759–765. doi: 10.1111/j.1469-7610.2006.01631.x
- Issue published online: 9 JUN 2006
- Article first published online: 9 JUN 2006
- Manuscript accepted 7 February 2006
- Speech-language impairment;
- psychiatric disorder;
- psychosocial outcomes;
Background: Evidence suggests there is a heightened risk of psychiatric disorder in children with speech-language impairments. However, not all forms of language impairment are strongly associated with psychosocial difficulty, and some psychiatric disorders (e.g., attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)) are more prevalent than others in language-impaired populations. The present study assessed the psychosocial adjustment in adolescence of young people with history of speech-language impairment, and investigated specific relationships between language deficits and psychiatric disorders.
Methods: Seventy-one young people (aged 15–16 years) with a preschool history of speech-language impairment were assessed using a psychiatric interview (K-SADS) supplemented by questionnaires probing social encounters and parental reports of behaviour and attention. Their psycho-social adjustment was compared with that of a cross-sectional control group of age-matched controls.
Results: Overall the rate of psychiatric disorder was low in the clinical sample and children whose language delay had resolved by 5.5 years had a good outcome. For those whose language difficulties persisted through the school years, there was a raised incidence of attention and social difficulties. These difficulties were partially independent and associated with different language profiles. The group with attention problems showed a profile of specific expressive language difficulties; the group with social difficulties had receptive and expressive language difficulties; and the group with both attention and social difficulties was of low IQ with global language difficulties.
Conclusions: Amongst children with speech-language delays at 5.5 years, those with more severe and persistent language difficulties and low nonverbal IQ are at higher risk of psychiatric morbidity in adolescence.