HEALTH

What Is A Lisp? Treatment And Tips

What Is A Lisp
Written by Antra Kamble

Most people among us don’t know what is a lisp? Is it a disability? However, it is true that it is a type of disorder found in small children. This disorder is a much more complicated issue than most people think. There are many factors that give rise to lisp in individuals. Today, in my article I will focus on what are its causes and treatments available to get rid of it. This will help you to identify the major forms of lisp disorder and treat them accordingly. Carry on reading to know more about what is a lisp in detail.

What Is A Lisp?

A lisp is a speech disorder where the person is unable to pronounce /s/ and /z/ sounds correctly. The speaker’s tongue may be sticking out between the front teeth producing the sounds like “th”. It is most commonly found in kids before the age of five. Scroll down to keep reading more about what is a lisp caused by and its different types.

Visit to know more about pathologist

Types Of Lisp

There are four major types of lisp speech disorders. The most common one is the frontal lisp. Let us know more about the different types of lisp in depth.

  • Frontal Lisp

A frontal lisp is also known as an interdental lisp. In the frontal lisp, the tip of the tongue sticks out between the front teeth. The “s” and the “z” sounds in words are vocalized as “th” sounds. For example, “pass” is pronounced as “path”, and “sleep” is pronounced as “theep”.

  • Palatal Lisp

Individuals develop palatal lisping when their tongue rolls too far back and touches against the roof of the mouth. This can occur in several sounds like /s/, /z/, /sh/, /ch/, /zh/, and /zj/.

  • Dental Lisp

Dental Lisp is similar to a frontal lisp. In dental lisp, the individuals push their tongue against the front teeth.

  • Lateral Lisp

It occurs when the air moves over the sides of the tongue while speaking. It often sounds slushy because you can hear a mix of air and saliva.

Causes Of Lisp

You must be curious, what is a lisp caused by? This occurs because of the incorrect placement of the tongue in the speaker’s mouth. Most lisps are caused because of the following factors.

  1. Learning to pronounce sounds incorrectly.
  2. Jaw alignment problems
  3. Tongue thrust
  4. Tongue-tie
  5. Orbiting lips
  6. Underbite lips

In some cases, lisping disorder stays temporary and it tends to go away after a certain age.

Treatment To Correct Lisping

Lisp can be treated with speech therapy. This speech therapy can be broken down into five stages. Below I have mentioned all the five stages that are included in speech therapy.

  • Assessment

The first thing you will need to do for lisp therapy is to assess the lisp. You just need a lot of words for your child to say. This will help you to evaluate which sounds have the lisp and which don’t.

  • Tongue Placement

With the help of your speech therapist, you can practice tipping your tongue downward while you practice your /s/ and /z/ consonants.

  • Practicing Words

You can start practicing words with initial, medial, and final consonants with your child at home.

  • Practice Phrases

After practicing several words, you can move forward to practicing phrases. Your speech therapist will take your difficult words and put them in different sentences for you to practice with.

  • Practice Conversation

You can have a conversation with your child by asking them to tell you a story. While conversing your techniques should be natural.

Tips For Lisp

The best way to determine whether you have a lisp is to listen and look at how the S sounds in words. You can try these techniques to pronounce the/s/ and /z/ sound correctly. 

  • Younger children may not be able to correct their lisp if they aren’t aware of their difference in pronunciation. As a parent, you can know your child’s proper and improper pronunciations by focusing on their wrong speech.
  • You can practice coarticulation.For more effect you can place some more sounds besides to the target sound while coarticulation.This will help you so that it comes out more clearly.
  • Sometimes, you are able to get the /s/ sound but are struggling to get /z/. In this case, practice turning the child’s voice on by humming. Tell your child to keep his hand on his throat so he can feel the vibrations while humming. Ask them to say the /s/ sound and then turn his voice on.
  • You can also make your child say the /t/ sound over and over again (t…t….t….t…t). Now, try to get a nice /s/ sound after the last /t/ sound. For example, it should sound like this “t…t…t…t…tssss”. You can practice it more in words that end in “ts” like belts and cats.
  • Drinking water, drinks, or any other liquids through a straw can help a lisp by keeping the tongue pointed naturally down away from the palate and front teeth.

Lisp Test Words

You just need a lot of words to evaluate which sounds have the lisp and which ones don’t. I recommend you test both the /z/ and /s/ in all word positions. Below I have mentioned the lisp test words that will help you whether your child is having a lisp disorder.

Initial /s/Medial /s/Final /s/Initial /s/ BlendsFinal /s/ Blends
SayBaseballBaseSmileCoughs
SeePopsicleCreaseSmellLaughs
SirenPiecesMooseSmallForests
SleepPacifierKissSmoothTests
SoapCastleBossSwingClaps
SimpleWhistleClassSweetTips
SockDinosaurBusSwimWasps
SadGlassesMouseSnakeAsps
SoyRecycleStairsWhisks
SecondPencilSticker
Initial /z/Medial /z/Final /z/
ZebraPuzzleMaze
ZooBulldozerSneeze
ZipperLizardEyes
ZapWizardNose
ZeroTweezerFizz
Zig ZagJaws
ZoneFuzz

Famous Celebrities With Lisps

Below I have mentioned the list of famous celebrities with lisp disorder.

  1. Drew Barrymore
  2. Mike Tyson
  3. Sean Connery
  4. Humphrey Bogart
  5. Michael Phelps
  6. Barbara Walters

FAQ

What Is A Lisp Caused By?

Lisp disorder occurs because of the incorrect placement of the tongue in the speaker’s mouth. Most lisps are caused because of the following factors.

  1. Learning to pronounce sounds incorrectly.
  2. Jaw alignment problems
  3. Tongue thrust
  4. Tongue-tie
  5. Orbiting lips
  6. Underbite lips

How Do You Fix A Lisp?

You can fix a lisp with the help of the following tips.

  • Younger children may not be able to correct their lisping if they aren’t aware of their difference in pronunciation. As a parent, you can know your child’s proper and improper pronunciations by focusing on their wrong speech.
  • You can practice coarticulation.For more effect you can place some more sounds besides to the target sound while coarticulation.This will help you so that it comes out more clearly.
  • Sometimes, you are able to get the /s/ sound but are struggling to get /z/. In this case, practice turning the child’s voice on by humming. Tell your child to keep his hand on his throat so he can feel the vibrations while humming. Ask them to say the /s/ sound and then turn his voice on.
  • You can also make your child say the /t/ sound over and over again (t…t….t….t…t). Now, try to get a nice /s/ sound after the last /t/ sound. For example, it should sound like this “t…t…t…t…tssss”. You can practice them in words that end in “ts” like belts and cats.
  • Drinking water, drinks, or any other liquids through a straw can help a lisp by keeping the tongue pointed naturally down away from the palate and front teeth.

How Do You Know If You Have A Lisp?

To know if you have a lisp you need to undergo a lisp test. This test will help you determine whether you have a lisp or not. Here, you need to pronounce a certain set of words having the /s/ and /z/ sounds.

Is A Lisp Bad?

No, having a lisp is not bad. It is just a minor speech disorder that can be cured.

Conclusion

There you go! I have explained to you what is a lisp and how to get rid of it in my above article. The bottom line is, it is a common speech disability that usually appears during early childhood. This often results in unclear speech. Individuals can undergo speech therapy to cure lisping. You gradually need to go along with speech therapy by practicing that sound in sentences. I have also mentioned certain tips that will make it easier to fix it! After knowing what is a lisp, start working on the ways to get rid of it.

About the author

Antra Kamble

Hi, I amAntra Kamble. I enjoy drawing paintings and watching movies in my free time. I also love to travel and explore new places, learn new things. I am fond of writing and reading.

Leave a Comment