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HealthInfo Canterbury

Overview of aphasia

Two men use expression, writing and drawing to communicate Aphasia (pronounced a-fay-zee-a) is a language disorder. There are many different types of aphasia. It affects your ability to communicate with others.

If you have aphasia you may find it hard to:

It can be hard to understand messages and get your messages out.

You still know what you think and how you feel but may find it hard to describe this with words. You can still hear and see.

Causes of aphasia

Aphasia is caused by damage to the language centre of the brain. This is usually in the left side of the brain.

You may have had:

Being understood with aphasia

Communication is interacting with another person, having a conversation, and sharing your thoughts, wants, needs, opinions, and ideas.

We need to communicate to make and sustain relationships and take part in life activities.

Use all the ways of communicating to express yourself. You can:

Ask people to give you time to say what you want to say.

Your speech-language therapist can offer more specific ways to help you communicate.

  HealthInfo recommends the following pages

On the next page: Finding and recalling words

Written by speech-language therapists, Canterbury DHB. Adapted by HealthInfo clinical advisers. Last reviewed December 2020.


See also:

Brain injury

Page reference: 78064

Review key: HISCD-79694