Speech and language therapy interventions are used with individuals of all ages.
Speech-language pathologists (SLP’s) work with a full range of swallowing disorders and human communication disorders in a variety of settings such as; private, education, healthcare and research facilities. In many of these settings, SLP’s work collaboratively with other disciplines including; physicians, teachers, psychologists, audiologists, social workers, occupational therapists, physical therapists, and rehabilitation counselors to optimize results.
Speech-language pathologists (SLP’s) are educated to prevent, evaluate, diagnose, and treat speech, language, cognitive or social communication disorders and swallowing disorders related to disability, illness, trauma, stroke, surgery or other delays. Speech disorders are often diagnosed by an SLP when an individual has difficulty producing speech sounds correctly or fluently or has problems with their voice or resonance. Language disorders are diagnosed when a person has trouble with expressive or receptive language impacting their ability to socialize in appropriate ways. Social communication disorders are determined when an individual has difficulty with the social use of verbal and nonverbal communication. Cognitive communication disorders are diagnosed when an individual has difficulty organizing their thoughts, remembering, paying attention, planning and/or problem solving and swallowing disorders are determined if a person has trouble swallowing or feeding.
There are many speech and language therapy intervention options depending on diagnosis.
Oral motor programs, language programs, aural rehabilitation, augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) programs and individualized programs to learn to communicate more effectively are a few examples. In addition, speech-language pathologists provide ongoing training and education to families, caregivers, and professionals. Speech and language therapy intervention is intensely researched to illustrate the value of speech language pathology services to adults and children with any of the above mentioned disorders.
Core values of speech and language therapy interventions include
- Maximizing verbal and nonverbal communication
- Identify and treat barriers that limit performance and participation
- Working as an interdisciplinary team to optimize results
- Providing counseling and consultation
- Training and educating support personnel
- Engaging in research to further enhance knowledge in regards to speech, language, and communication