Lifespan Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy, and Speech and Language Pathology Services, PLLC has been providing school based and preschool services to school districts in a four county area for over 20 years.
Speech and Language Pathology Services are intended to improve Speech Delay, Articulation and a variety of other speech, hearing, or language difficulties.
Articulation and Phonological Therapy
The goal of articulation therapy is to improve speech sound production so a child is more easily understood by others. This is accomplished by teaching a child how to move their tongue, lips and jaw to produce a specific sound, and then how to say the sound in a variety of words, phrases and sentences.
Childhood Apraxia of Speech (CAS) is a speech disorder in which the child has difficulty coordinating the complex movements necessary for speech. Apraxia therapy focuses on decreasing frustration by using other means to communicate (gestures, sign language, pictures, Augmentative Communication Devices) as well as teaching the child to produce a variety of sounds and syllables.
Swallowing disorders can occur at any age. In infancy, children with Cleft Palate, Cerebral Palsy, or Down Syndrome may need swallowing therapy. Pediatric swallowing therapy focuses on the skills necessary for feeding, such as coordinating the suck-swallow-breathe pattern necessary for an infant to suck from a bottle or breast. Later in life, a stroke or other neurological disorder may necessitate swallowing therapy as well. In this case, therapy will focus on exercises to regain function, teaching compensatory strategies, or changing a client’s diet so that he or she can eat safely.
Language therapy can look very different depending on the age of the child and the nature of the language delay. In Early Intervention and preschool, therapy often focuses on teaching the child to speak their first words, build their vocabulary, and begin to combine words into short phrases. In elementary school and beyond, therapy is more specific, based on the child’s needs (grammar, vocabulary, story telling, listening comprehension, etc.).
Stroke and Other Neurological Disorders
Sometimes after a stroke, car accident, or other neurological condition, a person will lose some or all of their language ability. With the help of a Speech-Language Pathologist, a person is often able to regain many of these skills. Speech therapy will focus on relearning how to speak, listen, read and write. If needed, a Speech Pathologist can introduce Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) systems, such as pointing to words or pictures to communicate, or using an AAC device.
Skilled Nursing Facility Staffing
A Speech-Language Pathologist in a Skilled Nursing Facility will assess and provide therapy for language disorders and swallowing disorders that can occur as a result of a stroke, neurological condition, dementia, or other conditions. A Speech Pathologist may make dietary recommendations so that a client can eat safely.
Pediatric therapy is provided in a variety of settings, including home, daycare, preschool, Head Start, or elementary/middle/high school. Therapy is provided in the least restrictive environment and is individualized to meet each child’s needs. At home, parents are encouraged to participate in sessions and to carry over strategies even after the speech therapy session is over.
Home care is provided for adults who are homebound and need therapy. This is often done after a person is discharged from the hospital after a stroke, accident, or other neurological event. Therapy is provided at home until the client is discharged or well enough to leave their home to receive therapy in an outpatient facility.
Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) means anything from a white board and a marker, to a high-tech speech generating device, used to supplement or replace speech. AAC can be used if a client’s speech is difficult to understand, or if a client is not able to speak at all. Options include: using pictures to communicate, writing or pointing to written words, pushing switches to activate a pre-recorded word or phrase, or using a speech-generating device. There are also apps for tablets, such as the i-Pad, that can be used for speech generation.