Most children are known to be talkative. However, some children may find it more difficult than others to speak clearly and expand their vocabulary. In such cases, a speech therapist may be needed. Here are a few frequently asked questions about speech therapists.
What is speech and language therapy?
Speech and language therapy is aimed at helping individuals develop better communication skills. These therapists can help a child enunciate properly, build a wider vocabulary, construct sentences and interact better with others. They can also help treat stutters and swallowing problems.
What does speech therapy involve?
Speech therapy can be practiced at home, in a clinic or at schools. The first step of this therapy is to set a clear goal. This goal should be measurable, realistic and be attached to a time frame. Therapy sessions may be in the form of group sessions or one-on-one sessions. This also includes parent education programs to help build an environment that fosters learning.
Can speech therapy benefit children with learning disabilities?
Speech therapy can be very beneficial for children with learning disabilities like autism or down syndrome. In such cases, a speech therapist can help the child develop better speech patterns and help them express themselves. By doing this, they can also make the child a better listener and help them follow simple instructions and answer questions.
When does a child need speech therapy?
If a child does not meet the general milestones for his or her age by the age of 2 years, he may need to see a speech therapist. This includes a limited vocabulary, using single words instead of phrases, answering questions by repeating the question etc. Not being able to pronounce vowels could also be a sign that speech therapy is needed.
How long will a child need speech therapy?
Each child learns at a different pace. Hence, there is no uniform duration of speech therapy. The duration of the therapy depends on the severity of the problem, the improvement shown in sessions and reinforcement available at home.
How can parents help with speech therapy?
A therapist has limited time available with the child. Hence, the responsibility of evaluating the child’s progress falls largely on the parents. Parents are involved in the therapy right from the stage of setting goals. Later, they can also help by reinforcing the therapist’s exercises at home. For this, the therapist may share instructional videos with the parents.