Aphasia vs Dysarthria: Difference and Comparison

Aphasia and Dysarthria are both medical conditions related to communication impairment. Both disorders have many similar things, although there are some key differences. These disorders lead to communication difficulty caused by some trauma, stroke, brain injury, or tumor. It occurs in the muscles of the brain, which makes the communication senses difficult.


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Key Takeaways

  1. Aphasia is a language disorder affecting a person’s ability to understand, speak, read, or write, while dysarthria is a motor speech disorder affecting the muscles responsible for speech.
  2. Aphasia results from damage to the brain’s language centers, whereas dysarthria arises from damage to the nervous system controlling speech muscles.
  3. Treatment for aphasia focuses on language rehabilitation, while dysarthria treatment targets improving speech muscle strength and coordination.

Aphasia vs Dysarthria

The difference between Aphasia and Dysarthria is that Aphasia is a language impairment, while Dysarthria is a speech impairment. Aphasia affects a person’s ability of language, to understand, write, read, or speak a language. Dysarthria is the speech impairment in which a person’s speech is affected.

Aphasia vs Dysarthria

Aphasia is a disorder that happens due to some medical condition of the brain. In this disorder, a person cannot understand a language. He will have difficulty in understanding, speaking, writing, or reading a language. It’s like he knows what he wants to say, just he cannot put it in any words of any language.

Dysarthria is a speech disorder in which a person understands the language but speaks it in a slurry way. The tongue or voice box is affected, due to which the words come out all slurry. The muscles which help a person to speak are affected, they are damaged or paralyzed, due to which speaking for a person becomes difficult.

Comparison Table

Parameters of ComparisonAphasiaDysarthria
DefinitionAphasia is a language impairment, in which a person has difficulty understanding a language.Dysarthria is a speech impairment, in which a person has difficulty speaking.
Associated withAssociated with language functions like reading, writing a language.Associated with bulbar abnormalities.
SymptomsHaving trouble putting words together, mixing up words, not understanding what others are saying.Speaking more quickly or slowly, mumbling words, and Slurring in speaking.
DiagnosedMagnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and CT scan.MRI or Ct scans, Blood tests, Electromyography tests, etc.
TreatmentRehabilitation, Communication Exercises.Speech Therapy and exercises.

What is Aphasia?

Aphasia is a language disorder. This disorder damages the areas of the brain that produce and process language. Aphasia can happen to anyone. It is caused because of a brain injury, stroke, trauma, or tumor. The effect of the disorder can be mild or severe.

A person with this disorder has difficulty speaking, understanding, reading, and writing a language. They have trouble putting words together. They know what they want to say, but they don’t know how to put it in words and meaningful sentences. And so they mix up words of a language. They have difficulty finding words. Also, they have difficulty putting places, things, persons, and events together. They have trouble expressing their thoughts.

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and computed tomography (CT) are used to identify the cause and areas of the brain that are damaged. A basic language test is also done physically. This disorder can be treated but cannot be cured.

To improve language and communication abilities, Rehabilitation along with a speech-language pathologist is done. Therapy is the only way to overcome this disorder. Many exercises are used, like reading, writing, listening, and repeating wording exercises. Learning expressive language skills, such as using facial expressions and gestures to communicate is also used to treat.

What is Dysarthria?

Dysarthria is a speech disorder in which a person’s speech is affected. The person can understand, speak, read, and write a language, but when he speaks, the words come out slurry. The person has difficulty speaking only, not reading, writing, and understanding.

The symptoms of the disorder are speaking more quickly or slowly, mumbling words, pausing in between words, Slurring in speaking, Sounding robotic, Difficulty having moving lips and tongue, etc. The muscles of the tongue, vocal cord, or voice box are affected by this disorder. The speech organs are damaged in this disorder.

Dysarthria occurs due to Brain tumors, Stroke, Brain Injury, Dementia, or side effect of certain medications. Neuromuscular diseases like Cerebral palsy, Multiple Sclerosis, Parkinson’s, and Huntington’s can also cause dysarthria.

MRI or Ct scans, Blood tests, Electromyography tests, etc., are used to diagnose the disorder. Physical Evaluation is also done to test the speaking abilities. The disorder cannot be cured fully. Speech-language pathologists give the treatment through therapy and exercises. Speech therapy is used to control the movements of the tongue and lips to improve the sound of the words. And exercises are used to strengthen the muscles of the mouth.

Main Differences Between Aphasia And Dysarthria

  1. Aphasia is a language disorder, while on the other hand, Dysarthria is a speech disorder.
  2. In aphasia, the language is abnormal; in dysarthria, the language is normal.
  3. In aphasia, a person is unable to understand, speak, read, or write a language. While in Dysarthria, a person can understand the language, but the speech is slurred.
  4. The symptoms of Aphasia are mumbling words, slurred speech, talking too fast, sounding robotic, etc. The symptoms of Dysarthria are saying the wrong words, not understanding what others are saying, etc.
  5. Aphasia is always due to a brain disease, while dysarthria can be because of brain injury or damage to the speech organs.
Difference Between Aphasia And Dysarthria
  1. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/B9780121258313502203
  2. https://pubs.asha.org/doi/abs/10.1044/jshr.3905.s46
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