The first step to effective speech-language pathology intervention is an individual, in-depth assessment of speech and cognitive-linguistic skills.
Assessment procedures are chosen based on an individual’s age and the nature of their disorder. All assessments include clinical observations as well as standardized and non-standardized evaluation tools. The initial assessment takes between 1-1 ½ hours and can be divided into two sessions depending on the patient and severity of the disorder. Upon completion of testing, a diagnosis is formulated and a comprehensive report is written. The results of the assessment are discussed with both the patient and their referring physician.
The therapist and patient then collaborate to develop an individualized Plan of Care outlining the course of treatment.
With very young children therapy very often consists of parent counseling and language stimulation activities to help enable and support child development.
Intervention activities for school-age children and teenagers encompass a wide range of language-based games, literacy activities, rhymes, music, and art exercises that make language learning fun and enjoyable.
Adult clients benefit from our experience with a multitude of cognitive-linguistics techniques and computerized programs which enables us to develop an individual program that fits the personal needs of our patients.
Speech-language therapy sessions are typically 30 minutes in duration and are recommended two to three times weekly. The duration of treatment depends on the severity of the disorder, the age of the client and associated physical, emotional and social factors.
LSVT LOUD® and VitalStim® therapy sessions are 60 minutes in duration and are recommend three to five times weekly depending on the severity of the disorder.
Overview of Conditions
Speech disorders refer to difficulties producing speech sounds. Listeners often have trouble understanding the communication of an individual with a speech disorder.
Language & Communication:
A language disorder is an impairment in the ability to understand (receptive) and/or use (expressive) words. Some characteristics of language disorders include improper use of words and their meanings, the inability to express ideas, inappropriate grammatical patterns, reduced vocabulary and the inability to follow directions. Language disorders are observed in both children and adults and can be developed of acquired in nature. Language disorders involve semantic-pragmatic disorders, autistic spectrum disorder, and acquired neurological disorders such as aphasia, dementia and brain injury.
Cognitive disorders are conditions that cause individuals to have difficulty thinking. Although symptoms can vary, typically changes in awareness, perception, reasoning, memory and judgment are observed.
Fluency disorders are characterized by an interruption in the flow or rhythm of speech, such as stuttering, which is commonly referred to as dysfluency.
Individuals with voice disorders may have difficulty with pitch, volume or quality of their voice (i.e., hoarseness, loss of voice).
Dysphagia or difficulty swallowing can occur in children and adults. It is especially common in the elderly and with individuals with neurologic conditions. The term dysphagia refers to difficulty passing food or liquid from the mouth to the stomach.