Information about Dysarthria

Dysarthria is difficulty speaking caused by brain damage or brain changes later in life.

General Advice

  • Avoid distractions e.g. turn off the radio, TV
  • Be patient and tolerant
  • Do not pretend to understand if you don’t
  • Ask the person to say shorter sentences or say key words
  • Ensure that you can see the person’s face and mouth to aid your understanding
  • Repeat what you have understood or ask questions to ascertain what is meant
  • Ask for a message to be repeated if necessary
  • Recognise if the person becomes tired

Specific Advice

  • Ask the person to write down what they are trying to say
  • This person does not have any problems understanding what you are saying, therefore, there is no need to slow down your speech or simplify your language
  • Check that the person has all their aids in place e.g.
    • Glasses
    • Hearing aid
    • Dentures
    • Communication aid
  • Encourage the person to use gestures
  • Ask the person to slow down their rate of speech to help you understand
  • Encourage the person to use their:
    • Picture communication chart
    • Alphabet chart
    • Communication device