Speech therapy is a type of physical therapy that evaluates and addresses speech disorders, communication issues and swallowing problems. Although speech therapy is mostly recommended for children who have speech and communication challenges, it has also been proven useful for adults who have suffered a brain injury and must relearn how to talk and eat.
The team at Quality Life Services offers speech therapy to adults. Our highly qualified and compassionate specialists will help you or your loved ones with our first-rate program for speech, language and mouth function issues. In this article, we give an overview, examples and benefits of speech therapy.
How Do I Know I Need Speech Therapy?
A general practitioner, though not trained to offer speech therapy, may detect signs of a speech or communication disorder during an appointment. They may refer you to a speech-language pathologist or speech therapist, and recommend some initial screenings for you or your loved ones. These tests will not only confirm an issue but will also reveal the root cause.
Advantages of Speech Therapy
Speech therapy offers a wide range of benefits, including:
- The ability to properly articulate ideas
- Improvement in swallowing and oral health
- More confidence in social situations
- More control over stutters
- Better enunciation
Examples of Speech Therapy
There are different types of speech therapy that can be used to treat various disorders affecting speech, hearing, and swallowing. These are:
Speech Therapy for Apraxia
Apraxia of speech refers to a neurological disorder where patients find it difficult to say the right sounds and words. A speech therapist can help if you or your loved one has Apraxia of speech. This type of therapy will include exercises such as focusing on getting your muscles to move correctly, teaching your muscles to make sounds again, and saying sounds over and over while using the correct mouth movements.
Speech Therapy for Aphasia
Aphasia refers to a condition in which persons have difficulty speaking, listening, reading and writing due to some sort of brain damage. It is common in people who have suffered a stroke There are many activities a speech therapist might use to help a person with aphasia, including:
- Exercises that improve language skills
- Group therapy to enhance conversational skills
- Gestures and writing to strengthen communication skills
Speech Therapy for Swallowing Difficulty
A speech therapist is also equipped to assist persons who are not able to swallow when they eat or drink. They will allow you or your loved ones to do exercises that strengthen the mouth, increase tongue movement, and improve chewing.
Speech Therapy Techniques You Can Try at Home
There are techniques you can use in between speech therapy appointments. Some general activities to try at home are:
- Being patient and attentive whenever they speak
- Playing games that require your loved one to speak
- Leading by example as a speech model.
Adults with speech disorders can also gain from at-home exercises. You or your loved ones can try:
- Sticking your tongue out, hold for two seconds, then bring it back in. Repeat this process several times a day. This and other exercises help train your tongue to move in coordinated patterns.
- Smiling in front of a mirror can help enhance your motor skills.
- Puckering your lips can help you control the movement of your mouth.
- Reading out loud
- Playing word games can enhance cognitive function and improve your thinking ability.
Speech Therapy in Cincinnati, Ohio
Do you or your loved one have difficulty communicating or swallowing? Reach out to the team at Quality Life Services. Our experts can help you to overcome your speech disorders with our range of services including speech therapy and articulation. Contact us today to request a phone call or to book an appointment.