Speech Therapy goals may include Language: Acquiring new words, combining words into sentences, appropriate grammar, following directions, auditory processing, written language and early reading skills. Speech: Vocal quality and stuttering. Feeding/Swallowing: Swallow training and acceptance of different textures.
A Speech Therapist is a certified speech-language pathologist. They address speech, language, articulation, vocal sounds, fluency, literacy, pragmatics, and hearing disorders to help people communicate effectively. Any speech or language problem is likely to have a significant effect on the child’s social and academic skills and behavioir. Early speech and language intervention can help children be more successful with reading, writing, schoolwork, and interpersonal relationships (www.asha.org
Speech-Language Pathologists (SLPs) specialize in swallowing disorders, also known as dysphagia. Their analysis involves the oral phase, pharyngeal phase, and esophageal phase.
A referral to a SLP (and pediatrician) may be indicated when a child refuses food, liquid or different textures, frequently vomits, is diagnosed with aspiration pneumonia, recurrent respiratory infections, weight loss, exhibits excessive drooling and coughing, and stiff posture during swallowing.
Therapy may include strengthening and coordinating of the oral-motor muscles and synergies, improved suction and seal, acceptance of different textures, diet modification, postural changes, cognitive and behavioral therapy.