Speech therapy is a form of treatment that helps individuals improve their pronunciation, strengthen the muscles used in speech, and learn to speak correctly. It can be used to treat a variety of speech problems and disorders, from minor issues such as hoarseness of voice to partial loss of speech due to brain damage. A speech therapist, also known as a speech-language pathologist, evaluates, diagnoses, and treats speech disorders and communication problems. They work with both children with developmental delays and adults with speech problems caused by injury or illness.
Your healthcare provider may refer you to a speech-language pathologist for a variety of reasons. For example, if your child has difficulty communicating, your healthcare provider will determine if it is due to a speech disorder or a hearing problem. If you have a medical condition that has caused a speech disorder, your healthcare provider will advise when it is time to see a speech therapist. Your speech therapist will create an individualized care plan tailored to your needs or those of your loved one. The American Speech, Language and Hearing Association (ASHA) is the national professional, scientific and accrediting association with 223,000 members and affiliates who are audiologists, speech-language pathologists, speech-language pathologists, speech, language and hearing scientists; support staff in audiology and speech-language pathology; and students. For children, the most successful results from speech therapy occur when it is started early and practiced at home with a parent or caregiver.
The duration of speech and language therapy depends on many factors such as the severity of the problem, the frequency and consistency of the therapy, and the consistency of home help. There are several techniques that your speech therapist can use to treat your condition. Speech disorders occur when a person cannot produce speech sounds correctly or fluently, or has issues with voice or resonance. Speech-language pathologists (SLP) work to prevent, evaluate, diagnose and treat speech, language, social communication, cognitive communication, and swallowing disorders in children and adults. When developing a program for your child's speech therapy, it is important to set realistic expectations with the therapist. A fundamental component of the Speech-Language Pathology program is the acquisition of knowledge and skills, the analysis and synthesis of the vast knowledge acquired, and the development of critical thinking skills.
The Graduate Program in Speech and Language Pathology shares the mission of Touro College in accordance with the Jewish commitment to intellectual research, the transmission of knowledge, and professional interests in the field through scholarships, research and outreach to community service. Delaying speech therapy for your child can mean missing out on that important period between birth and three years of age when the brain is maturing quickly and learning occurs rapidly. If you or your child are having difficulty communicating, ask your healthcare provider if you can schedule an evaluation with a speech therapist. If a medical condition has caused your speech disorder, your speech and language skills may improve as you recover from the underlying problem. If your healthcare provider suspects that you or your child has a speech disorder, he or she will recommend some initial tests.