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Düşünen Adam. 2017; 30(4): 299-308

Relation of language features with maternal depression, family functioning, and digital technology usage in children with developmental language delay–comparison with healthy controls

Gonca Ozyurt, Cagla Dinsever Elikucuk.

Objective: Language and communication are very important in the social, emotional and cognitive development of children. Developmental language delay (DLD) is one of the most frequent developmental problems. This study aims to evaluate and compare language profiles between children diagnosed with DLD and healthy controls. The relation between language development and maternal depression, family functioning, and digital device usage is also evaluated.

Method: Eighty-eight children diagnosed with DLD and 92 healthy controls with no developmental delay or chronic diseases attending other policlinics were included in the study. All the children were in the 24-72 months age interval. Test of Early Language Development was used to evaluate language profiles; Beck Depression Inventory was used to examine maternal depression; and The McMaster Family Assessment Device was used to evaluate family functioning. The researchers prepared a questionnaire to assess the subjects’ digital device usage.

Results: The sociodemographic features of the groups were similar. Statistically significant differences were found in all language subscales between groups. Maternal depression level in the DLD group was higher than that of the control group. There were more problems in family functioning in the DLD group than among the controls. Digital technology usage and non-supervised digital technology usage were more than in the control group.

Conclusion: Early intervention in DLD is very important. Incorporating mothers in the treatment process, evaluating maternal mental health and informing them about digital technology usage may provide positive results for children diagnosed with DLD.

Key words: Developmental language delay, digital technology usage, family functioning, maternal depression

Article Language: Turkish English

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