Processing problems

How we can help people with processing problems

Processing problems occur when the brain cannot process auditory or visual information correctly. Hearing is not affected, however people who have processing problems have difficulties processing and identifying different sounds especially speech sounds and complex language. This condition is especially worse in noisy situations or when having to listen to complicated instructions. Generally, this condition occurs more in men. When processing auditory information is affected, this can also be known as Auditory Processing Disorder (APD).

Speech and language therapy can help to support individuals with processing problems by providing strategies and techniques, which will help them to cope and manage with their difficulties in everyday life.

What are processing problems?

Processing problems are when auditory and visual information, especially speech sounds are not processed correctly. People often struggle with background noise, and on the telephone which can lead to difficulties hearing in social situations. Speech may appear cluttered and disordered as a result of such difficulties. Speech and language therapy can help with processing problems.

What causes processing problems?

There are many different causes of processing problems and some are unknown. However head trauma and chronic ear infections are two of the more common causes. Memory and attention may be a problem with people who suffer from processing problems. Processing problems may start appearing as a child.

What problems caused by processing problems can SLT UK help with?

There are lots of different problems associated with processing problems that speech and language therapy can help with. Speech and language therapy can help attention, listening, comprehension, expressive, speech sound, general communication and social communication difficulties caused by processing problems.

How does speech and language therapy help processing problems?

Speech and language therapy can help with processing problems. It can offer different techniques to overcome and manage the effects of communication difficulties such as processing problems.

Speech and language therapy includes exercises for reading, writing, repetitive speech patterns and direction following. A speech and language therapist may use the aid of computer assessment as well as standard measures, depending upon the individual’s level of disorder. Speech and language therapy is always tailored to each individual.

Speech and language therapy can be extremely beneficial for an individual with processing problems, speech and language therapy may reduce a patient's stress and anxiety whilst increasing their confidence. This may open up more work and social opportunities for the individual as their language and communication continues to improve and strategies to communicate develop.

What would speech and language therapy treatment for processing problems involve?

Speech and language therapy for processing problems can involve assessments, reports, reviews, therapy programmes, support groups, training, advice and education. Therapy will be tailored to suit the individual's needs and may include other elements.

Our speech and language therapists provide individualised treatment programmes which will be tailored to the individual’s specific needs and abilities. Specific treatment programmes which can help individuals with processing problems include:


Processing problems can take many different forms and occurs when the brain cannot process information quickly enough. This leads to difficulties identifying speech sounds, complex language and other information correctly. Speech and language therapy can help with this difficulty. If you feel you may benefit from speech and language therapy, please do not hesitate to contact us.

If you feel you may benefit from speech and language therapy or would like any more information on our services please email or call 0330 088 5643.

Related pages

Communication problems Comprehension problems Expressive problems Receptive problems Processing problems Production problems
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