Aphasia is an acquired communication disorder impairing part or all of a person’s use of language.
It occurs after parts of the brain controlling language are damaged (eg after a stroke, head trauma, brain tumour), impairing a person’s ability to speak, write and/or understand words.
A person with aphasia may have problems:
- Thinking of the words to say
- Saying words the right way
- Speaking or writing in sentences that make sense
- Understanding words or conversations
- Following directions
- Reading and understanding what was read
- Spelling words correctly
Aphasia affects every person differently — in severe cases, communication with a person with aphasia may be almost impossible. It’s common for multiple aspects of communication to be impaired, while some still function, allowing some level of communication. Aphasia may have an impact on one or all their languages.
Aphasia is not an impairment of intelligence!