Purpose: The use of Non speech Oral Motor Exercises (NSOME) for motor speech sounds disorder treatment has been discussed in the literature in the last three decades with most of the research presenting poor results for using NSOME. The purpose of this article was to add evidence related to that debate and show the correlations between NSOME and sound production among children diagnosed with Childhood Apraxia of Speech (CAS). Another goal is to clarify the misuse of the term in clinical settings and literature and presenting solutions to the debate such as the new OPT term.
Method: 256 VML entry evaluations and 89 long term treatment processes were analyzed retrospectively. The correlations between Single Sound Pronunciation (SSP) and NSOME variables (i.e. blowing , oral motor imitation and tongue movements) were calculated using the entry evaluation group, as well as the correlations between the changes in SSP and NSOME variables using the long term group.
Results: High correlations were found between NSOME variables and SSP in both groups tested.
Conclusions: The results confirmed the relationship between oral motor skills and sound production. Theoretical explanations and practical implications are further discussed.