What Is Speech Therapy and How It Works

What Is Speech Therapy and How It Works

Speech therapy for adults is the assessment and treatment of communication and speech disorders. It is performed by speech-language pathologists (SLPs), which are mostly referred to as speech therapist.

The techniques are used to improve communication such as articulation therapy, language intervention activities, and others as per the type of speech or language disorder. It is required for speech disorders in children or speech impairments in adults caused by an injury or illness.

Why Speech Therapy?

There are several disorders that can be treated with speech therapy.

  • Articulation disorders: It is the inability to properly form certain word sounds. A child may drop, swap, distort, or add word sounds. Distorting word would be saying “thith” instead of “this”.
  • Fluency disorders: It affects the flow, speed, and rhythm of speech such as stuttering and cluttering. A person has trouble getting out a sound and may have speech that is blocked or interrupted. A person with cluttering often speaks very fast and merges words together.
  • Resonance disorders: It occurs when a blockage or obstruction of regular airflow in the nasal or oral cavities alters the vibrations and also happens when velopharyngeal valve doesn’t close properly.
  • Receptive disorders: A person has trouble in understanding and processing what others say. Other language disorders, autism, hearing loss, and a head injury can lead to this.
  • Expressive disorders: In this a person has a difficulty in conveying or expressing information. You may also have trouble forming accurate sentences. It’s associated with Down syndrome and hearing loss.
  • Cognitive-communication disorders: It happens because of an injury to the part of the brain that controls your ability to think. It can result in memory issues, problem solving, and difficulty speaking, or listening.
  • Aphasia: This is an acquired disorder that affects person’s ability to speak and understand others or read and write.
  • Dysarthria: Slow or slurred speech due to a weakness or inability to control the muscles. It’s most commonly caused by nervous system disorders and facial paralysis or throat and tongue weakness.

What happens during speech therapy?
Speech therapy begins with an assessment where SLP identifies the type of communication disorder and the method to treat it.

Online speech therapy for kids
For children, speech therapy might take place in a classroom or small group, or one-on-one sessions. The exercises and activities vary depending on child’s disorder, age, and needs.

Speech therapy for adults
It also begins with assessment and the best treatment available. Exercises for adults can help with speech, language, and cognitive communication.

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