home
RSS
June 24th, 2010
11:03 AM ET

Why am I mixing up my words? Is this a learning disability?

As a feature of CNNhealth.com, our team of expert doctors will answer readers' questions. Here's a question for Dr. Gupta.

From Matthew, Mount Laurel, New Jersey

"I'm 45. Don't smoke, drink. Married since '93. Have 11-year-old sons, both diagnosed with Asperger's but mainstream and doing fine. Over the past year or so, I've caught myself saying a similar word to the one I'm thinking. Talking about pouring a "box" instead of bowl of cereal. Calling the boys down for "breakfast" instead of dinner. Reminding them to eat their "hot dog'"when they're clearly holding a hamburger. My family notes when this happens and it's worrying me. My wife (a special ed teacher) believes it's a learning disability and it's just becoming more pronounced as I age. I did go to speech lessons in elementary school. Does this sound like anything to look into?"

Answer

Language issues like the ones you describe, Matthew, can be relatively innocuous or they may be subtle, early clues about more serious problems occurring in the brain, such as a tumor or infection. You cannot be sure until you are checked out by a doctor, but what you are describing can occur in a brain disorder called aphasia or dysphasia.

It occurs when there is damage to regions of the brain that control language. According to the National Aphasia Association, about 1 million people in the U.S. deal with some form of aphasia. More specifically, your symptoms sound like something neurologists call semantic paraphasia. That is, substituting the word you intend for one that has a similar meaning.

"The word you're substituting is still within the context of the word you mean to say," said Dr. Olajide Williams, a neurologist at Columbia University Medical Center. "Instead of saying 'clock' you say 'watch' or instead of saying 'dinner' you say 'lunch.' Instead of saying 'spoon' you say 'fork,' and on down the line."

Semantic paraphasia is usually due to sudden brain trauma, such as a stroke or a blow to the head. Your symptoms sound different - like they have developed gradually. According to Williams, that would rule out a stroke, which typically occurs suddenly.  And he says that speech problems related to semantic paraphasia usually happen alongside other communication problems involving writing, reading, repetition and comprehension.

In your case, that may or may not rule out semantic paraphasia. What is left are a host of other possibilities. Neurodegenerative disorders, brain tumors, and brain infections affecting language areas of the brain could also be to blame.

Now before you become too concerned, you should follow your instinct and look into this further. Seek the advice of a neurologist, who will most likely give you a comprehensive language exam. The exam involves an evaluation of your speech - from basics to more complex tasks. You may also be tested for reading, writing and grammar to try to pick up brain abnormalities.

An important part of this complex equation is that you have had your symptoms for a relatively short period of time, so if there is a problem, you have a better chance of addressing it.

Good luck Matthew.


soundoff (2,223 Responses)
  1. I Fashion Styles

    Some tips i have observed in terms of pc memory is the fact there are specs such as SDRAM, DDR or anything else, that must fit the requirements of the mother board. If the personal computer's motherboard is rather current and there are no computer OS issues, improving the ram literally usually takes under sixty minutes. It's on the list of easiest personal computer upgrade techniques one can visualize. Thanks for revealing your ideas.

    https://www.ifashionstyles.com

    November 29, 2020 at 23:18 | Report abuse | Reply
  2. Hairstyles

    In these days of austerity and also relative anxiety about taking on debt, lots of people balk up against the idea of employing a credit card in order to make acquisition of merchandise or pay for a holiday, preferring, instead only to rely on the particular tried as well as trusted way of making repayment – cash. However, if you possess the cash available to make the purchase completely, then, paradoxically, this is the best time for them to use the card for several reasons.

    https://www.hairstylesvip.com

    December 1, 2020 at 20:24 | Report abuse | Reply
  3. Willie Cormia

    5 Hacks To Guarantee You Never Have To Worry About Bad Breath https://bit.ly/36rfzdB

    https://bit.ly/36rfzdB

    December 2, 2020 at 17:28 | Report abuse | Reply
  4. Hairstyles

    Thanks – Enjoyed this blog post, is there any way I can get an email sent to me when there is a fresh post?

    https://www.hairstylesvip.com

    December 2, 2020 at 20:20 | Report abuse | Reply
  5. I Fashion Styles

    We're a group of volunteers and opening a new scheme in our community. Your website provided us with valuable information to work on. You've done a formidable job and our whole community will be thankful to you.

    https://www.ifashionstyles.com

    December 2, 2020 at 21:59 | Report abuse | Reply
  6. Eleonore Einwalter

    5 Lies About Bleeding Gums Health https://bit.ly/36rfzdB

    https://bit.ly/36rfzdB

    December 4, 2020 at 02:18 | Report abuse | Reply
  7. Todd

    Hello! I could have sworn I've been to this blog before but after reading through some
    of the post I realized it's new to me. Nonetheless,
    I'm definitely happy I found it and I'll be book-marking and checking back
    frequently!

    Here is my homepage – drug

    December 5, 2020 at 09:35 | Report abuse | Reply
  8. Mac Auberry

    Flash is already installed on my work computer, however firefox is not communicating with it for some odd reason. I can not reinstall flash because like i said this is my works computer, therefore i need admin rights to install flash. So how can i make Firefox work with the flash thats already been installed by admin?. . thanks!.

    https://lovewiki.faith/wiki/You_Can_Now_Enjoy_Soccer_With_One_Of_These_Recommendations

    December 5, 2020 at 23:32 | Report abuse | Reply
  9. ElliotKix

    fast acne remedies https://redfilosofia.es/atheneblog/Symposium/topic/comprar-rivotril-por-internet-sin-receta herbal food stores

    December 6, 2020 at 09:10 | Report abuse | Reply
  10. Clement Neeper

    Best view i have ever seen !

    https://profile.hatena.ne.jp/discordfisd/

    December 6, 2020 at 11:49 | Report abuse | Reply
  11. Crave Freebies

    Wonderful blog! I found it while searching on Yahoo News. Do you have any tips on how to get listed in Yahoo News? I've been trying for a while but I never seem to get there! Appreciate it

    https://www.cravefreebies.com

    December 7, 2020 at 06:46 | Report abuse | Reply
  12. Hairstyles VIP

    Generally I don't learn post on blogs, however I would like to say that this write-up very forced me to take a look at and do it! Your writing taste has been amazed me. Thanks, quite great article.

    https://www.hairstylesvip.com

    December 7, 2020 at 07:35 | Report abuse | Reply
  13. Free Stuff

    Wow! This could be one particular of the most useful blogs We've ever arrive across on this subject. Actually Excellent. I am also an expert in this topic therefore I can understand your hard work.

    https://www.cravefreebies.com

    December 7, 2020 at 19:29 | Report abuse | Reply
  14. Melody Ludvigson

    I am using the revolution code blue template for wordpress. I would like to change all fonts to Trebuchet MS. I have tried editing the stylesheet but no luck. Any suggestions?.

    http://www.articledude.com/classifieds/user/profile/329084

    December 10, 2020 at 00:33 | Report abuse | Reply
  15. Medium Length

    Once I initially commented I clicked the -Notify me when new comments are added- checkbox and now each time a remark is added I get 4 emails with the same comment. Is there any manner you'll be able to remove me from that service? Thanks!

    https://www.hairstylesvip.com/hairstyles/medium-length

    December 10, 2020 at 05:23 | Report abuse | Reply
  16. Hairstyles

    I liked as much as you'll receive performed right here. The sketch is attractive, your authored subject matter stylish. nonetheless, you command get got an impatience over that you want be delivering the following. sick indisputably come further earlier once more since exactly the similar just about very regularly inside of case you defend this increase.

    https://www.hairstylesvip.com

    December 10, 2020 at 08:10 | Report abuse | Reply
  17. I Fashion Styles

    Hello! I know this is kinda off topic however , I'd figured I'd ask. Would you be interested in trading links or maybe guest writing a blog post or vice-versa? My blog discusses a lot of the same subjects as yours and I feel we could greatly benefit from each other. If you are interested feel free to shoot me an e-mail. I look forward to hearing from you! Terrific blog by the way!

    https://www.ifashionstyles.com/

    December 10, 2020 at 14:41 | Report abuse | Reply
  18. GuQin

    Nice blog here! Also your website loads up fast! What host are you using? Can I get your affiliate link to your host? I wish my website loaded up as fast as yours lol

    http://www.guqinz.com

    December 11, 2020 at 16:39 | Report abuse | Reply
  19. detectives privados merida

    detectives privados navarra

    https://www.argadetectives.com/detectives-dos-hermanas-sevilla.html

    December 12, 2020 at 01:51 | Report abuse | Reply
  20. Lorenzo Swaggerty

    Have a best sex in your life

    https://mpcspay.com/mynordstrom/

    December 12, 2020 at 12:26 | Report abuse | Reply
  21. Toya Skorupa

    Toller Artikel Ich habe es wirklich genossen. Hast du Pickel Entfernung ausprobiert?

    https://hederavita.ch/pickel-mit-naturkosmetik-loswerden/

    December 14, 2020 at 08:19 | Report abuse | Reply
  22. Vapor Dog

    Has anyone ever shopped at Top Grade Vapors? xx

    https://addictedtospurs.co.uk/new-cloud-vapor-lounge-hemp-and-cbd-shop-located-in-randle-98377-wa-141168

    December 15, 2020 at 02:18 | Report abuse | Reply
  23. Hairstyles

    It抯 really a nice and helpful piece of info. I am glad that you shared this helpful information with us. Please keep us up to date like this. Thanks for sharing.

    https://www.hairstylesvip.com

    December 15, 2020 at 06:02 | Report abuse | Reply
  24. Mountian View Vapes

    Has anybody shopped at Fantasy Vapes? x

    https://addictedtospurs.co.uk/smart-smoke-vapors-hemp-and-cbd-store-close-to-quarndon-de22-eng-82248

    December 15, 2020 at 11:04 | Report abuse | Reply
  25. Hairstyles

    Thanks for the diverse tips shared on this weblog. I have noticed that many insurance carriers offer clients generous deals if they elect to insure more and more cars together. A significant variety of households possess several vehicles these days, specially those with more aged teenage children still dwelling at home, as well as the savings upon policies can certainly soon increase. So it pays off to look for a bargain.

    https://www.ifashionstyles.com/beauty/hairstyles

    December 15, 2020 at 16:22 | Report abuse | Reply
  26. Magdalen Putcha

    I have realized that online education is getting preferred because getting your degree online has turned into a popular option for many people. A huge number of people have certainly not had a possible opportunity to attend a conventional college or university however seek the increased earning possibilities and career advancement that a Bachelor's Degree gives you. Still other people might have a college degree in one field but want to pursue some thing they already have an interest in.

    https://dreamproxies.com/tag/fastest-speed-private-proxies/

    December 15, 2020 at 16:22 | Report abuse | Reply
  27. ZIWE

    137830 376616Utilizing writers exercises such as chunking. They use numerous websites that contain several creative writing exercises. Writers read an exercise, and do it. 82779

    December 15, 2020 at 23:59 | Report abuse | Reply
  28. online slots

    Best view i have ever seen !

    https://onlyfreespin.com/en

    December 17, 2020 at 12:15 | Report abuse | Reply
  29. Yiphyu

    recommended Tips free of charge dating on the internet

    . you must see to it while searching for beginning and ending dates on the internet. Free dating online can provide a wide array of people you could use yet right away, Remember that you do not know latamdate scam you you might be relationship, So it's necessary to play tested.Create an outside contact account for your courting behavior. Use a quick get in touch with neither which posts out an inappropriate word. get around remarkably tempting names or in any manner an individual could very well feel you could be in it for the gender.goal initial encounter with the individual except when you have been in touch within the net regarding month or so and have started to know the average person rather.in the event you plan to start dating,to start a date, avoid the place at a place that isn't by your office or house. in the case, you may not truly thinking the time on get together the person, You wouldn't need to push into anybody later on.Try to prepare crowd occassions where everyone friends would likely connect their valuable particular the same place at.not at all buy pretty much any personal information like your home or office explains, communication numbers, therefore on. til you have got together with the person several times a day and count on him/her.certainly advise some good friend or cousin within place you are wanting to in contact with your time as well often carry your telephone in hand. if you ever get later part of the alternatively are in need of an improve, an individual's beneficial and also in comparison should know about whereabouts.

    December 19, 2020 at 05:41 | Report abuse | Reply
  30. Kristopher Sizar

    ??? ????? ????? ????? ???? ?? ????? ?? ????? ??? ?? ?????? ??????? . ????? ??????? ????? ???? ?????? ??????? ?????? ??????? ???? ????? ?????? ??????? ??? ??????? ??? ?? ??????? ?? ????? ????????.

    http://hfuyei.com

    December 19, 2020 at 10:41 | Report abuse | Reply
  31. Lenny Tuttle

    I was curious if you ever considered changing the structure of your site? Its very well written; I love what youve got to say. But maybe you could a little more in the way of content so people could connect with it better. Youve got an awful lot of text for only having 1 or two pictures. Maybe you could space it out better?

    https://extraproxies.com/

    December 19, 2020 at 11:08 | Report abuse | Reply
  32. zortilonrel

    Hiya, I am really glad I've found this information. Nowadays bloggers publish just about gossips and web and this is actually frustrating. A good blog with exciting content, this is what I need. Thank you for keeping this web-site, I will be visiting it. Do you do newsletters? Can not find it.

    http://www.zortilonrel.com/

    December 19, 2020 at 15:25 | Report abuse | Reply
  33. Kum Konow

    Cuando se nos pregunta qué clase de tiendas online frecuentamos en internet, la mayoría de nosotros respondemos las clásicas; es decir, las tiendas de ropa, por ejemplo, especialmente aquellas que venden ropa muy exclusiva que no se encuentra fácilmente en ninguna tienda de a pie; las de electrónica, videojuegos y chismes de segunda mano en general. De modo que ya lo sabe: ya sean casquillos, pasadores, ejes, tuercas cualquier otro tipo de piezas destinadas a la construcción de maquinaria lo que necesite, ahora sabe que está a un teclear y a un click de encontrar una tienda que proporcione justo lo que necesita.

    http://bbs.xilimso.com/home.php?mod=space&uid=51517

    December 20, 2020 at 11:19 | Report abuse | Reply
  34. zortilonrel

    I have not checked in here for a while since I thought it was getting boring, but the last several posts are great quality so I guess I will add you back to my everyday bloglist. You deserve it my friend 🙂

    http://www.zortilonrel.com/

    December 20, 2020 at 13:36 | Report abuse | Reply
  35. Thaddeus Ronquillo

    dance schools that also offers free yoga classes would be very very nice*

    http://6dollarmillion.xyz

    December 20, 2020 at 14:30 | Report abuse | Reply
  36. Mollie Frisella

    When do you think this Real Estate market will go back up? Or is it still too early to tell? We are seeing a lot of housing foreclosures in Winter Springs Florida. What about you? I would love to get your feedback on this.

    http://6dollarmillion.xyz

    December 20, 2020 at 14:34 | Report abuse | Reply
  37. liposomal cbd balm

    where to buy cbd was in quad cities

    https://family-budgeting.co.uk/cbd-gummies-other-fun-stocking-stuffers/

    December 25, 2020 at 06:44 | Report abuse | Reply
  38. Free Stuff

    Woah! I'm really enjoying the template/theme of this website. It's simple, yet effective. A lot of times it's difficult to get that "perfect balance" between superb usability and visual appearance. I must say you've done a amazing job with this. Additionally, the blog loads extremely quick for me on Chrome. Exceptional Blog!

    https://www.cravefreebies.com

    December 26, 2020 at 09:16 | Report abuse | Reply
  39. Free Stuff

    Undeniably believe that that you stated. Your favorite reason seemed to be at the net the simplest thing to be mindful of. I say to you, I definitely get annoyed whilst people consider concerns that they plainly do not recognise about. You managed to hit the nail upon the highest and also defined out the entire thing with no need side effect , people can take a signal. Will probably be again to get more. Thanks

    https://www.cravefreebies.com

    December 26, 2020 at 09:43 | Report abuse | Reply
  40. Hairstyles Women

    Hello. fantastic job. I did not imagine this. This is a fantastic story. Thanks!

    https://www.hairstylesvip.com

    December 26, 2020 at 10:20 | Report abuse | Reply
  41. Hairstyles

    Generally I do not read article on blogs, however I wish to say that this write-up very compelled me to try and do so! Your writing taste has been surprised me. Thanks, very great article.

    https://www.hairstylesvip.com

    December 26, 2020 at 10:55 | Report abuse | Reply
  42. earn passive income fast

    MONSTERMODE 700K is a cutting-edge funnel-based app that can generate 100 commissions – – 90 Second Set Up – Beta Tested Proven 24-7 AUTOPILOT Income – 100 FREE Multi-Tier Traffic Built In More details: https://bit.ly/2YfQFcC

    https://bit.ly/2YfQFcC

    December 26, 2020 at 14:35 | Report abuse | Reply
  43. I Fashion Styles

    Hi there! Do you know if they make any plugins to safeguard against hackers? I'm kinda paranoid about losing everything I've worked hard on. Any suggestions?

    https://www.ifashionstyles.com

    December 26, 2020 at 19:08 | Report abuse | Reply
  44. Fidela Wilsey

    I really like your blog.. very nice colors & theme. Did you make this website yourself or did you hire someone to do it for you? Plz answer back as I'm looking to construct my own blog and would like to know where u got this from. thanks

    https://extraproxies.com/tag/openness/

    December 26, 2020 at 20:23 | Report abuse | Reply
  45. Bernardo Fortis

    When I originally commented I clicked the -Notify me when new feedback are added- checkbox and now each time a remark is added I get four emails with the identical comment. Is there any approach you can remove me from that service? Thanks!

    https://dreamproxies.com/tag/cosmoproxies-promo-codes/

    December 27, 2020 at 15:20 | Report abuse | Reply
  46. kurtköy rus escort

    Everything is very open with a very clear clarification of the issues. It was truly informative. Your site is extremely helpful. Thanks for sharing!

    http://www.istanbulescorthatun.net/kurtkoy-escort-bayan/

    December 28, 2020 at 11:36 | Report abuse | Reply
  47. Sanda Ohashi

    Yesterday I woke up feeling quite tired. I Really have had trouble sleeping for the last few nights (no worries, I made up for it last night once I was in bed by 9am and slept like a baby). I had a pep in my step though because I was headed to my internship. I really don't write a great deal about it, since I am not comfortable really sharing what I do there because I am working with High School kids and I like to maintain a tiny privacy about where I work and who I'm working with. I am so appreciative of your admiration and comprehension of that. What I'll say is that I am totally loving it. My internship has shown to me that this is the complete right profession for me to maintain. Every morning when I walk into school, I think to myself,"I can't want until I graduate in May and then have this is my life everyday!" . Hopefully this is, if I receive a counseling job straight out of college. There are minimal tasks available at the beginning of each school year. I am hopeful. I'll cross that bridge once I arrive at it. https://truehealthreport.com/happy-friday-workout-with-meal-plan/

    http://jtayl.me/4nvkw

    December 29, 2020 at 04:33 | Report abuse | Reply
  48. kartal escort kizlar

    I was able to find good advice from your content.

    http://www.istanbulescorthatun.net/kartal-escort/

    December 29, 2020 at 10:48 | Report abuse | Reply
  49. Aileen Roesslein

    Have You thought about hiring a sitter, which means you've got free time to better look after your health? It is a good idea and you can use this time to become more active. Think about optimizing your time and the harder exercise you can do would get your heart rate and blood racing, this is the kind of workout that actually provides you results and maximizes your free time. https://is.gd/ZLFeIu

    http://divineurl.com/23jps

    December 29, 2020 at 14:25 | Report abuse | Reply
  50. Dave Froehle

    I'm curious how creative writing instructors at colleges and universities handle students who write about really disturbing things and who seem potentially dangerous to themselves and others? Are instructors privy to students' mental health records? Do they let such students get away with violent or disturbing writing in an effort NOT to stir too much trouble? Do you become proactive in trying to help these students? Do you undergo training to deal with problem students? As a creative writing student at a university, I often see disturbing stuff brought into workshops. I'm wondering what the profs think of all this. Thanks to any answers!.

    https://www.facebook.com/KateKowalskyWebMarketing

    December 29, 2020 at 16:46 | Report abuse | Reply
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45

Leave a Reply to average perscription pills taken by 65 year old canadian?


 

CNN welcomes a lively and courteous discussion as long as you follow the Rules of Conduct set forth in our Terms of Service. Comments are not pre-screened before they post. You agree that anything you post may be used, along with your name and profile picture, in accordance with our Privacy Policy and the license you have granted pursuant to our Terms of Service.

Advertisement
About this blog

Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.