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Boy Town Celebrates DLD Awareness Day with Lighting Event

Boys Town, Neb. – Boys Town National Research Hospital is working to raise awareness for Developmental Language Disorder (DLD). Friday October 14th is Developmental Language Disorder Awareness Day, and this year the world is lighting up purple and yellow to shine light on this condition. Light-up locations in Omaha are the Papillion Overpass, the John Kerry Pedestrian Bridge, and the Lied Learning and Technology Center.

Boys Town Hospital is a hub of research and clinical services for DLD, which is a significant barrier to learning, using and understanding spoken language. DLD is a hidden but common disability that affects 1 in 14 people, usually diagnosed in childhood but it can persist into adulthood. People with DLD can talk, but have difficulty withlanguage tasks, like participating in a classroom or workplace discussion, reading a text or writing an essay. People who have DLD are at high risk for learning disabilities that affect reading, writing or math.

“Boys Town has been instrumental in raising awareness of Developmental Language Disorder,” said Donna Gay, mother of a Boys Town Patient. “The Boys Town speech pathologists are professionals in helping children with this disorder and this, in turn, helps these children and their parents as they learn and live their best lives.”

“DLD is likely the most common developmental disability that you’ve never heard of and for decades too many individuals have gone undiagnosed and therefore must navigate their social, academic, and professional lives without the support they need,” said Karla McGregor, PH.D., Boys Town Director of the Center for Childhood Deafness, Language & Learning. “Without awareness and understanding of DLD, people and families who live with DLD won’t get the help they need so at the international, national, and community levels, we are working hard to change that”.

Boys Town National Research Hospital has joined the campaign to raise awareness by working with Raising Awareness of Developmental Language Disorder (RADLD), an international organization helping to increase awareness of this hidden but common condition around the world. This year’s DLD day theme is Growing with DLD: People do not grow out of DLD but with individualized support that can include regular speech language therapy and educational adjustments, they can thrive. It’s about growing with DLD.

About Boys Town National Research Hospital

Boys Town National Research Hospital offers a broad range of hospital and clinic services, backed by 40 years of life-changing research to provide the latest, most innovative care to our patients. The Hospital is internationally recognized as a leader in hearing research and clinical care and is leading research efforts in language and neuroscience to improve the lives of children and families across America.

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Semaj Douglas
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Jordan Weinandt
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