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Aphasia

Physical Communication Cognitive Behavioural / Emotional

Aphasia results from damage to the parts of the brain that contain language (typically in the left half of the brain). Individuals who experience damage to the right side of the brain may have additional difficulties beyond speech and language issues. Aphasia may causes difficulties in speaking, listening, reading, and writing, but does not affect intelligence. Individuals with aphasia may also have other problems, such as dysarthria, apraxia, or swallowing problems.

People with aphasia may:

  • Experience difficulty coming up with the words they want to say
  • Substitute the intended word with another word
  • Switch sounds within words
  • Use made-up words
  • Have difficulty putting words together to form sentences
  • String together made-up words and real words fluently but without making sense
  • Misunderstand what others say, especially when they speak fast (e.g., radio or television news) or in long sentences
  • Find it hard to understand speech in background noise or in group situations
  • Misinterpret jokes and take the literal meaning of figurative speech (e.g., “it’s raining cats and dogs”)
  • Have difficulty reading forms, pamphlets, books, and other written material
  • Have problems spelling and putting words together to write sentences
  • Have difficulty understanding number concepts (e.g., telling time, counting money, adding/subtracting)

There are many types of treatment available for individuals with aphasia. The type of treatment depends on the needs and goals of the person with aphasia. Treatment may be provided in individual or group sessions.


"We are medical practitioners. The real experts are the parents. Over the last 35 years they have taught me everything I know"
Lucia Braga; Brazil
"We need to harness the power of brain plasticity for treating children and young people with brain injury. Stressful experiences alter brain development of a child, especially at the key ages of 0-3 and at ages 10-16"
Professor Bryan Kolb; Canada
"More play increases brain plasticity and makes for better recovery post brain injury"
Professor Bryan Kolb; Canada
"Too often children and young people with ABI are discharged from hospital without specialist brain support that they and their families need to overcome lifelong challenges"
Andrew Ross; former Chief Executive of the Children's Trust
"Healthy teens are better at identifying strategies to deal with barriers. KIDS WITH ABI'S CAN'T!"
Shari Wade; USA
"Brain development is complex and prolonged. Brain plasticity is influenced by a range of factors. Plasticity provides a base for neuro-rehab therapies and treatment"
Professor Bryan Kolb; Canada
"Parent-supported interventions following pediatric ABI bring reductions to the cost to society"
Eric Hermans; Netherlands
"Intensive and individualized approaches work. A one-size-fits-all approach doesn't. You have to make it relevant to the child."
Recolo; United Kingdom
"Often families don't have the financial capability to access services. We need to rethink how we delivery neuro-rehab services to children and young people"
Vicki Anderson; Australia
"When different organisations assess different aspects of a child's neuro-rehabilitation needs, everyone looks at things from a different perspective and highlight needs and conflicting priorities"
Cathy Jonson; Rehab without Walls; United Kingdom.

OUR MISSION: To work to remove (health) inequalities for children & young people affected by acquired brain injury; and provide effective support to their families that makes a real difference.

Council for Disabled Children Lottery Funded