Speech-language pathologists (SLP) work to prevent, evaluate, diagnose and treat speech, language, social communication, cognitive communication, and swallowing disorders in children and adults. Speech-language pathologists, also called SLP, are experts in communication. With apraxia of infant speech, a child has trouble making precise movements when speaking. It occurs because the brain has difficulty coordinating movements.
Children, teens, and adults can suffer from these abnormal movement patterns of the face and mouth. They occur due to abnormal growth and development of facial muscles and bones, the cause of which is not clear. People with orofacial myofunctional disorders may have problems eating, talking, breathing through the nose, swallowing, or drinking. SLPs work in a variety of settings, such as hospitals, residential care centers, nursing homes, rehabilitation clinics, schools, and private therapy offices.
An SLP must be patient and compassionate, with the ability to listen well and interpret the behavior of people who have difficulty communicating. According to the American Speech, Language and Hearing Association (ASHA), school SLPs aim to identify disorders early so that they can implement preventive therapies and advise teachers and families on the best ways to support students. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that 38 percent of SLPs work in state, local or private schools, while 22 percent work in occupational, speech, physical or hearing therapy offices. In medical settings, SLPs design exercises to help patients practice fluidity, repair lost motor and cognitive functions, or find alternative methods of communication.
SLPs must be attentive and detail-oriented professionals, always willing to grow and seek better methods to administer treatment. Speech-language pathologists (SLP) are an example of health professionals who help people of all ages improve their speech and communication skills. After graduation, a one-year clinical fellowship (or medical training period) is required, with a minimum of 1260 hours of work under the supervision of a certified SLP. SLPs provide therapy to people with hearing loss, children with developmental delays, and people with communication and swallowing problems.