Interdental sigmatism: types and correction

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Interdental sigmatism: types and correction
Interdental sigmatism: types and correction

Usually, interdental sigmatism is spoken of as part of a speech disorder such as dyslalia, but it also occurs in some other cases. Such a violation of pronunciation manifests itself as a symptom in more complex diseases (dysarthria, alalia, cerebral palsy, intellectual deficiency).

interdental sigmatism correction

To help your child correct interdental sigmatism, you should as accurately as possible establish the causes of its occurrence. Depending on the nature of the violation, corrective work is carried out by a speech therapist and, if necessary, rehabilitation, adaptation or compensatory assistance of medical personnel.

How to fix interdental sigmatism in a child, and what is behind such an unusual name?

What constitutes a speech impediment

All articulation deficiencies are systematized depending on the violation of the pronunciation of a certain group of speech sounds. There are seven in total:

  • rotacism - distortion of sounds [p] and [p'];
  • lambdacism - [l] and [l'];
  • sigmatism - [g], [w], [h], [u], as well as [s] - [s '] and [s] - [s '];
  • jotacism - [th];
  • cappacism - distortion of posterior sounds [k]-[k'], [g]-[g'], [x]-[x'];
  • gammaism -[r] and [r'];
  • hitism - [x] and [x'].

As you can see from the above list, sigmatism is the most extensive group. This is due to the proximity of the patterns of the listed sounds during pronunciation. So, the patterns of sounds [s] - [h] and [w] - [g] are the same (they differ only in the presence of a voice in a voiced consonant).

Types of sigmatism

The considered group of violations is divided into five subgroups:

  1. Interdental sigmatism - the tongue takes the wrong position between the teeth.
  2. Labio-dental - pronunciation is done with the help of lips and teeth.
  3. Side - the stream of air does not come out through the tip of the tongue, but along the sides.
  4. Teeth - the tongue is pressed against the upper teeth.
  5. Hissing - the tongue moves from front to back, causing sound distortion.
  6. Nasal - the tongue tightens and moves back, pressed against the larynx, directing the air stream upwards.

The names of species indicate the location of the disturbed pronunciation. But despite the variety of violations, the most common is interdental sigmatism. With it, the characteristics of the sound [s] are distorted (the whistle disappears and an incomprehensible faint noise is heard) due to the position of the tongue between the teeth. If, with the correct articulation, air passes through the tip of the tongue along the groove that forms on the back of the tongue, then it is absent in a distorted position, contributing to the appearance of noise overtones.

The presence of such a speech defect in a child or in adults is due to a number of organic and sometimes behavioral reasons. Therefore, the correction of the interdentalsigmatism should begin with the identification of all unfavorable factors.

interdental sigmatism

The importance of timely and correct diagnosis

In modern speech therapy, the problem of speech disorders is considered in a complex way by logopsychology, pathopsychology, defectology, speech therapy, sociology. This approach is due to the complexity of the manifestation of speech disorders as a symptom or as a syndrome. It is important to identify it and start correcting it as early as possible.

With a normal development, a child pronounces all vowels and consonants by the age of three (sonorous [r] and [l] may appear by the age of four - this is not critical), does not lose syllables in spoken words, builds complex sentences. There are diaries (often in the form of a notebook to fill in) of development, in which the emergence of all the skills in a child is staged, by months. Parents only need to periodically check with him, and if some skill is not formed in a timely manner, immediately pay close attention to this and find out the reason. Often the child is brought up at home, so there is no one to tell the mother the necessary actions in this situation.

If developmental delays or violations of any functions begin to appear, you should contact a specialist (pediatrician, speech therapist, psychologist, if necessary, a pediatric neurologist). In 90% of cases, timely correction allows you to forget about the existence of the problem by the age of seven, and sometimes even earlier. But if you miss this period of development, then you will have to spend much more effort, and the result may be unsatisfactory.

interdental sigmatism wheezing correction

Possible comorbid developmental disorders

Interdental sigmatism can be a symptom of such developmental disorders as open bite and other abnormal forms of development of the speech apparatus, overgrown adenoids, hypotension of the muscles of the speech muscles (this is how dysarthria manifests itself). In all these cases, the cause of the speech defect should be eliminated together with corrective work by a speech therapist. If diseases are ignored, the result of speech therapy work may not be seen.

If the problems of the development of the dentoalveolar system can be corrected by an orthodontist (with the help of plates and special simulators), then a psychiatrist is involved in the treatment of dysarthria, which often frightens parents. In practice, the identified dysarthria at the age of three by the age of seven does not manifest itself in any way, provided that the child is properly treated and timely corrective assistance is provided to the child.

Interdental sigmatism is often a concomitant developmental disorder in diseases such as cerebral palsy, intellectual disability, deafness, blindness. In these cases, everything depends on the degree of complexity of the underlying disease (the more complex the form, the less opportunities for correction) and the preservation of the intellect. Speech correction in such children drags on for many years and reaches a satisfactory level as much as possible.

articulatory gymnastics with interdental sigmatism

Correction work

If a child is diagnosed with a speech disorder, if all results are availableappropriate examination can and should begin to correct. Along the way, all possible pathogenic factors identified at the appointment with specialists are eliminated. Correction of interdental sigmatism is carried out in three stages:

  1. Preparatory. It implies the formation of positive motivation, the development of the skill of sound analysis, the preparation of the muscles of the tongue, jaws and lips for the production of sounds.
  2. Formation of the correct articulatory pattern. This is the setting, automation and differentiation of sound in syllables, words of different syllabic composition.
  3. Introduction of sounds into independent speech. Assumes the correct pronunciation of sound in all situations of communication.

This is how the correction of sound pronunciation with dyslalia looks like - impaired sound pronunciation against the background of the preservation of hearing and innervation of the speech apparatus. With the right approach, the correction of interdental wheezing sigmatism is corrected within three to five months with the correction of 2-3 sounds. But it can last from one to two years, if correction of 6-10 sounds is required.

If interdental sigmatism is a concomitant disease, then the named work is planned in conjunction with the correction of the underlying disease. For example, correcting sound pronunciation for dysarthria will consist of the following steps:

  • Preparatory. It takes place against the background of treatment prescribed by doctors, physiotherapy, massage and includes the preparation of the speech apparatus, the development of hearing, the ability to control voice and breathing, the formation of a dictionary.
  • Formation of pronunciation skills. Stage includes correctionviolations of the speech apparatus, sound pronunciation, vocal apparatus and breathing, the formation of skills in sound analysis and synthesis, communication.

In this case, the formation of communication skills occurs in parallel with the first two stages.

interdental sigmatism of hissing

Speech therapy gymnastics

Exercises for the development of the speech apparatus include training the jaws, lips and tongue. An example of articulatory gymnastics with interdental sigmatism may look like this.

  1. "Elephant smile": smile with your mouth closed as far as possible by pulling the corners of your lips, and then "pull your lips into a tube" and show how the elephant drinks water with its trunk. Repeat everything from the beginning. All exercises are performed 10 times at the same pace (this is very important). You can use the metronome in class.
  2. “Knead the dough”: massage a wide, relaxed tongue along the entire length with your lips, saying “five-five-five”, then you can do the same with your teeth - “ta-ta-ta”.
  3. "Pancake": lips in a smile, a wide tongue lies on the lower lip "cooling on the window." It is important to monitor the statics, not to allow arbitrary movements during the exercise.
  4. "Fence": stretch the lips in a smile, combine the upper teeth with the lower ones, building an even "fence". It is important to learn how to hold the jaw in this position for at least 10 seconds.
  5. “The cat is angry”: lips in a smile, rest the tip of the tongue on the lower teeth and alternately raise (“the cat arched its back in an arc”) and lower (“the cat calmed down”) the back of the tongue. In this exercise, it is very important to observerhythm and correlate the movements of the tongue with the movements of the metronome pendulum.
  6. "Swing": the initial position of the lips is a smile, "the tongue rides on a swing" under the metronome. First, a wide tongue closes the lower lip with its tip, and then the upper lip. The movement is repeated, at first at a slow pace, up to ten times.
  7. “Brushing the lower teeth”: with the tip of the tongue, go over the teeth from the outside, placing the tongue in the “pocket” between the cheek and the teeth. The tongue should "clean" all the teeth of the lower jaw. To strengthen the lateral muscles of the tongue, you can do the exercise “clean the upper teeth” (the movements are the same as with the lower teeth).
  8. "Tube": raise the sides of the tongue up, and lower the back down. You will get a groove through which air is blown out for a long time.

Exercises can be varied and, depending on the structural features of the child's speech apparatus, add others. It must be remembered that the elimination of interdental sigmatism always begins with speech therapy gymnastics - this is an axiom.

The preparatory stage continues as long as it takes to bring the speech apparatus into working condition. It implies controllability of the movements of the tongue, jaws, lips, the ability to hold the tongue in a given position for at least five seconds. Only after reaching such a minimum is it possible to move to the next stage.

elimination of interdental sigmatism

Sound production

There are not so many ways to cause the desired articulation pattern in a child. Only three:

  • imitation - performed by showspeech therapist;
  • mechanical - the way is formed with the help of speech therapy probes or objects replacing them (usually cotton swabs);
  • mixed - a combination of the first two ways.

When setting the sound [s] with interdental sigmatism, you can hide the tip of the tongue behind the lower teeth, put a spatula or cotton swab in the middle of the tongue (make a groove) and ask the child to close the teeth with a “fence”. In this position, the child blows a stream of air forward and controls by ear which sound is pronounced, remembers the correct sound.

This technique is used if simpler ones have not been successful. Repeat exhalation should be 5-6 times to avoid overworking the child. After a short break (changing the type of activity), you can return to the setting and consolidate the result. In the future, the reception is carried out with and without a spatula under the tireless control of hearing.

If the pronunciation of all whistling and hissing sounds is impaired, then the correction begins with setting [s] with interdental sigmatism. It is very important to “fill with images” the staging process and conduct the lesson, if possible in a playful way. As practice shows, the more visual comparisons a child has in a lesson, the faster the correction takes place.

An effective method is to record the process of the lesson in MP3 format, if possible, you can make a video recording of an excerpt from the lesson, and then discuss with the child what happened and why.

The staging ends only when the child pronounces the sound correctly in any state and as many times as desired. After thatcorrection of interdental sigmatism of wheezing moves to a new stage - automation.

Steps of introducing sound into speech

Automation of any sounds follows approximately the same plan, adhering to the principle "from simple to complex". The introduction of sounds into speech with interdental whistling sigmatism occurs as follows.

Sound automation:

  • in direct syllables (for example, – sa, -so);
  • in backward syllables (-as, -os);
  • in syllables of intervocalic position (-asa, -oso);
  • in syllables with a confluence of consonants (–stra, -arst);
  • at the beginning of a word (son, catfish);
  • at the end of a word (bite, ramp);
  • in the middle of a word (wasp, mustache);
  • in words with a confluence of consonants (construction, mouth);
  • in words and sentences (sauce; plum garden turned blue);
  • in proverbs and tongue twisters;
  • in words of a complex syllabic construction (nalistniks, accomplice).

It should be noted that the role of parents at this stage is only increasing. For the speedy automation of sound, it is very important not to weaken auditory control for a minute, and this can only be done with the support of significant adults.

Sound correction is carried out at a pace convenient for the child. Some items can take up to ten sessions, and some sound positions can be automated in a couple of sessions.

With interdental sigmatism of hissing sounds, all stages of working with whistling sounds are repeated, with the only difference being that the sound setting will be carried out based on the anatomical structure of the child's speech apparatus and complexitymanifestations of violation.

setting with interdental sigmatism

Speech material

Modern speech therapy has extensive speech material for every age and taste. In addition to collections of tongue twisters, tongue twisters, proverbs, there are various "speech notebooks" designed to help the child in mastering his native speech. Finding material for a particular child will not be difficult.

Parents should take note that if a speech therapist advises to engage in a certain allowance, you should not, in defiance of a specialist, buy notebooks in convenience stores. The mood of mom and dad to achieve certain results for the child is half the success, and joint activities with a speech therapist, as a rule, are success.


No matter how "scary" and unusual speech therapy terms sound, you should not be afraid of them. Most of them are of Latin or Greek origin, so their melody is not very pleasant.

As for the appearance of progress in speech pathologist children of different ages, without the support of parents, their control and stimulation, the child will not be able to achieve success.

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