Reasons Your Child May Be Having a Hard Time Communicating

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• Over 10% of children have some form of communication disorder, making it one of the most common disabilities. 

• Shyness can be caused by underlying issues like low self-esteem or trauma.

• Learning disabilities such as language processing disorder, auditory processing disorder, and dyslexia can all affect how a child communicates. 

• Mental health issues such as anxiety or depression can make communicating difficult and require professional intervention.

• Difficult life events like divorce or death of a loved one can also cause communication difficulties in children. 

If you have a child who is having difficulty communicating, you’re not alone. More than 10% of children have some form of communication disorder, making it among the most common disabilities in kids. Many children struggle with communication for various reasons. Here are five of the most common reasons why your child may be having a hard time communicating.

They’re Shy

Some children are naturally shy and find it difficult to speak up in groups or around new people. This can make it hard for them to communicate their needs or wants. It can also cause them to be reluctant to ask questions or express themselves.

The Root Cause of Shyness

Sometimes shyness is caused by underlying issues such as low self-esteem, fear of failure, or even trauma. Something may have happened in the past that caused your child to fear speaking up. For instance, they may have witnessed something upsetting or been the victim of bullying. It’s important to identify the root cause immediately so that you can help your child cope and begin working on their communication skills so that it won’t turn into a long-term issue.

They Have a Learning Disability

If a child has difficulty understanding words or expressing their thoughts, they may have a learning disability. These disabilities can make it difficult for a child to comprehend or follow instructions, which can prevent them from being able to communicate effectively with others. These are some of the learning disabilities that can affect communication:

Language Processing Disorder

This is a neurological disorder that affects the way a child processes language. It can make it difficult for them to understand what other people are saying and effectively express their thoughts. You may notice your child having difficulty following instructions or communicating with peers.

If your child has been diagnosed, treatment for language processing disorder is needed. This includes speech-language treatment and social skills groups. The treatment can last for several weeks or even months, depending on the severity of the disorder. You may also need to work with the school to ensure your child gets the accommodations they need to succeed.

A child attending a speech therapy session

Auditory Processing Disorder

This is a disorder that interferes with the way a person processes sound and language. A child with this type of disorder may have difficulty understanding what others are saying, or they may mishear words or phrases. They may also be slow to respond to spoken instructions or have trouble with language production.

Treatment for auditory processing disorder may include speech-language therapy, occupational therapy, and listening training. These treatments can help a child improve their listening skills, which can help them better understand and communicate with others.


Dyslexia is a language-based learning disability that affects how a person processes written words. It can make it difficult for them to read, write, and spell correctly. Children with dyslexia may also have difficulty communicating in group settings or forming complete sentences when speaking. Treatment for dyslexia often includes specialized instruction and tutoring. Dyslexia is a lifelong condition, so treatment may need to be ongoing.

Mental Health Issues

A child can experience mental health issues such as anxiety or depression, making communicating difficult.

Anxiety or Depression

Anxiety and depression are two common mental health conditions that can make it difficult for children to communicate. If your child is experiencing either of these conditions, it’s important to seek professional help to get the treatment they need. With proper treatment, many children can overcome their anxiety or depression and improve their communication skills.

A small girl sitting on the floor, covering her eyes with her hands

Your Child is Going Through a Tough Time

There are many times in life when children may have difficulties communicating, such as when they’re going through a divorce or the death of a loved one. If your child is going through a tough time, it’s important to be patient and understanding. Try to provide them with a safe and supportive environment where they can express themselves freely without judgment. You may also want to seek professional help if your child is having difficulty coping with a major life event.

Overall, there could be many reasons your child is having difficulty communicating. With patience and understanding from you as a parent, you can help them identify the root cause of their communication difficulties and find ways to address them. If needed, seek professional help for your child so that they can learn the skills necessary to become confident communicators.

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