FAQs

Q?

How long does speech therapy take?

A.

Speech therapy can vary from a short duration for something like an isolated tongue thrust or reverse swallow to a lengthy period of time for people that are deaf or have Down syndrome, autism, or cerebral palsy. Each case needs to be looked at individually and discussed with the professionals and family members within the context of the remediation process.

Q?

What is a Speech-Language Pathologist?

A.

Speech-Language Pathologists specialize in treating a variety of speech-language, cognitive, voice, and feeding-swallowing problems.

Working with the full range of human communication and its disorders, speech-language pathologists:

  • Evaluate and diagnose speech, language, cognitive-communication and swallowing disorders.
  • Treat speech, language, cognitive-communication and swallowing disorders in individuals of all ages, from infants to the elderly.

The main components of speech production include: phonation, the process of sound production; resonance; intonation, the variation of pitch; and voice, including aeromechanical components of respiration.

The main components of language include:

  • Phonology, the manipulation of sound according to the rules of the language
  • Morphology, the understanding and use of the minimal units of meaning
  • Syntax, the grammar rules for constructing sentences in language
  • Semantics, the interpretation of meaning from the signs or symbols of communication
  • Pragmatics, the social aspects of communication.

Q?

What kinds of speech and language disorders affect children?

A.

Speech and language disorders in children can affect the way they talk, understand, analyze or process information. Four major areas in which these impairments occur include:

  • Articulation | speech impairments where the child produces sounds incorrectly (e.g., lisp, difficulty articulating certain sounds, such as “l” or “r”);
  • Fluency | speech impairments where a child’s flow of speech is disrupted by sounds, syllables, and words that are repeated, prolonged, or avoided and where there may be silent blocks or inappropriate inhalation, exhalation, or phonation patterns;
  • Voice | speech impairments where the child’s voice has an abnormal quality to its pitch, resonance, or loudness; and
  • Language | language impairments where the child has problems expressing needs, ideas, or information, and/or in understanding what others say.

Language disorders include a child’s ability to hold meaningful conversations, understand others, problem solve, read and comprehend, and express thoughts through spoken or written words.

Q?

At what age should I seek out help for my child?

A.

Our Speech-Language Pathologists work with children from infancy to adolescence. If you are concerned about your child’s communication skills, please call to find out if your child should be seen for a communication evaluation and/or consultation. The early months of your baby’s life are of great importance for good social skills, emotional growth, and intelligence!

Q?

What are the warning signs of a communication disorder in my young child?

A.

Here are some of the common warning signs of a communication disorder by age range.

Birth to Six Months

  • Developmental or medical problems
  • Lack of response to sound
  • Lack of interest in speech
  • Limited eye contact
  • Feeding problems
  • Very limited vocalizations
  • Difficulties with attachment
  • Lack of interest in socializing

Six to Twelve Months

  • Limited sound production, lack of variety or amount.
  • Groping movements when attempting to make or imitate sounds.
  • Oral-motor problems such as excessive drooling, trouble with solid foods, intolerance to touch in and around the mouth.
  • Lack of interest in sounds-making toys, radios, T.V., music, voices.
  • Developmental or medical problems
  • Lack of response to sound
  • Lack of interest in speech
  • Limited eye contact
  • Feeding problems
  • Very limited vocalizations
  • Difficulties with attachment
  • Lack of interest in socializing

Twelve to Eighteen Months

  • Easily distractible.
  • Does not understand any words or directions.
  • Limited sound production, lack of variety or amount.
  • Groping movements when attempting to make or imitate sounds.
  • Oral-motor problems such as excessive drooling, trouble with solid foods, intolerance to touch in and around the mouth.
  • Lack of interest in sounds-making toys, radios, T.V., music, voices.

Eighteen to Twenty-four Months

  • Not using words some of the time to communicate.
  • No interest in imitation.
  • Won’t play games.
  • No jargon.
  • Grunting and pointing as primary means of communication.
  • Easily distractible.
  • Does not understand any words or directions.
  • Limited sound production, lack of variety or amount.
  • Groping movements when attempting to make or imitate sounds.
  • Oral-motor problems such as excessive drooling, trouble with solid foods, intolerance to touch in and around the mouth.
  • Lack of interest in sounds-making toys, radios, T.V., music, voices.

Two to Three Year Olds

  • Not combining words
  • Must be told and retold to carry out simple directions (not just non-compliance)
  • Using only nouns
  • Poor eye contact
  • No rapid increase in number of words understood and used
  • Does not tolerate sitting for listening activity/looking at books, etc.

Three to Four Year Olds

  • Not speaking in full sentences (not necessarily correct grammar, but nice variety of word types
  • Not using “I” to refer to self
  • Cannot relate experiences, even in simple telegraph sentences

Q?

What do the letters (MA, CCC-SLP) after your name mean?

A.

M.A. is an abbreviation for master of arts. M.S. is an abbreviation for master of sciences. Both graduate degrees have been used for students of Communication Disorders depending on the university attended and the year.

C.C.C. is an abbreviation for Certificate of Clinical Competence. Speech pathologists that have passed a national exam and did a clinical fellowship year with proper accreditation from the American Speech Language and Hearing Association will have those letters after their name.

S.L.P is an abbreviation for Speech-Language Pathologist, a certification awarded by the Americah Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA)

Q?

Will my child’s speech or language delay cause difficulties with academics or social interactions?

A.

There is definitely the possibility that impairment in the speech and language areas can have a detrimental effect on academics and social interactions. It is also known to have a very negative impact on self-esteem. These are all factors that can be addressed with treatment.

Q?

Will insurance help pay for speech therapy?

A.

Health insurance may sometimes cover speech and language therapy. There are variations in coverage based on carriers, individual’s policy and diagnosis. Be aware of  restrictions, deductibles and co-payments.