Many parents are concerned that using an AC system will prevent their child from developing speech. Although not all children will develop speech after using an AC system, AC does NOT interfere with the development of oral speech skills. In fact, AC can actually help with the development of oral speech.
Current research states that AC stimulates the development of oral speech by giving the child more opportunities to participate in communication and hear the correct production of sounds. AC also helps the development of language because it often combines a picture with a word. This helps the child understand what the word means. Finally, AC takes the pressure of speaking off children who have trouble with the physical demands of speech production.
Children know that speech is a faster and better form of communication. Therefore, the child will begin to use speech instead of AC when he or she develops the required oral-motor skills for speech.