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Definition

Aphasia is the loss of the ability to speak or understand speech or written language. It can be very mild or so severe as to make communication nearly impossible. It can affect one aspect of language, such as the ability to retrieve names of objects, put words together into sentences or simply read. More commonly, multiple aspects of communication are impaired while others remain accessible yet limited.

The basic cause of aphasia is thought to be damage to one or more areas of the brain that control the processes of language. This may result from a wide range of conditions, including stroke, tumors, trauma, infections and certain degenerative conditions. Fortunately, with hard work, perseverance and the help of a professional speech and language therapist, many people with aphasia are able to recover some or all of their impaired functions.

Signs & Symptoms

Individuals experiencing aphasia may exhibit some or all of the following symptoms:

  • Inability to recall certain words or phrases
  • Inability to form complete thoughts or sentences
  • Inability to cohesively put thoughts down on paper in the written form
  • Frustration
  • Depression

Treatment

In addition to conventional measures, which may include surgery or speech therapy, complementary modalities such as CranioSacral Therapy can play an important role in a comprehensive approach.

Clinically, therapists have discovered that aphasia often results from restrictions within the Avenue of Expression (thoracic inlet through the soft/hard palate). Restrictions within the intracranial membrane system, which may be causing the inability/difficulty constructing language, can also be released through gentle CranioSacral Therapy techniques.