Speech Therapy Basics

Speech therapy is a form of rehabilitation that addresses speech and language disorders. These disorders can be present from birth, or as a result of stroke, trauma, developmental delays, brain injury or disease. Speech therapy helps with communication and swallowing issues. It also helps children with developmental delays improve their language skills.

Speech therapy, also known as speech-language pathology, is a field that focuses on helping individuals develop and improve their communication skills. Speech pathologists (SLPs) work with people who have a difficulty communicating or swallowing. They often work with people in schools, hospitals, nursing care facilities, rehabilitation centers, and private practices.

Speech therapy can help people of all ages—from infants to the elderly—with a variety of disorders. A person may need speech therapy for problems such as:

  • Articulation disorder

This is when a person has problems speaking clearly. They may not be able to produce certain sounds or they may say sounds incorrectly.

  • Stuttering

When someone stutters they have trouble saying words or parts of words. They may repeat or prolong sounds, syllables, or words.

  • Aphasia

This is an impairment of language that occurs after brain damage (usually due to stroke). It can affect a person’s ability to speak, understand speech, write, and read.

  • Voice disorders

These involve changes in pitch, volume, and quality of voice. For example the voice may sound hoarse or strained or be too soft or loud. People with voice disorders may find it difficult to speak for long periods without losing their voice.

Speech therapy is the treatment of communication problems. Most often, speech therapy is used to help people gain the ability to speak clearly and fluently—but it can also be used for other purposes, such as improving your ability to swallow or helping you learn how to use an artificial voice box.

Speech therapists help patients improve their speech and language skills. Speech and language are two of the most important aspects of communication, so it’s no surprise that these therapists are in high demand. Speech therapists may work with people who have trouble speaking or understanding others’ speech. They may also be called upon to treat people who suffer from hearing loss or stuttering.

Speech therapy is a treatment for individuals who have difficulty speaking, swallowing, or breathing due to medical conditions such as stroke or head injury, developmental delays such as cerebral palsy or autism spectrum disorder (ASD), and other conditions that require intervention. Speech therapists work with patients to help improve their communication skills by teaching them strategies for managing their symptoms and preventing them from interfering with everyday tasks such as eating or walking across the room.

Speech therapists are trained to help people with their speech problems. They can help people who have had strokes or brain injuries, or who have autism or other developmental disorders. There are also speech therapists who work in schools helping children with language and communication skills.

There are different types of speech therapy. One type of speech therapy is called “augmentative communication,” which teaches people how to communicate using pictures, symbols or sounds instead of words when they can’t speak clearly enough for others to understand them.

Another type of speech therapy is called “differential diagnosis.” This helps identify why a person has trouble speaking by identifying what isn’t working properly (such as the muscles in your mouth or throat) and how this affects their ability to speak clearly and easily without extra effort on their part.

Tools for Speech Therapy 

  • A mirror, which allows the patient to see how they sound when they speak. It also helps them understand what it looks like when someone else speaks by comparing their own mouths with that of the person in the mirror.
  • A stethoscope, which allows you to listen to your own voice as you speak so that you can learn about your vocal quality. You can also listen to other people’s voices and compare them with yours.
  • A strobe light or other visual aids, which help you learn how to read lips better so that you can better understand what people are saying when they talk without making any noise themselves (such as whispering).
  • A microphone and/or speakers (depending on whether you’re using one or two), which allow you to hear yourself better while speaking so that you can make adjustments based on how it sounds in real time rather than having wait until later before making any changes.”
  • Chart paper is used so that a therapist can write down notes about their patient’s progress, or to keep track of what exercises they’ve been doing in therapy sessions. It’s also useful for writing down goals for each session (such as learning how to pronounce certain sounds correctly).

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