What Is Speech and Language Voice Therapy?

For those of you who are wondering what is speech and language voice therapy, it is the treatment for conditions that concern speech and language disorders. Before we get into the discussion regarding what is speech and language voice therapy, let us first define speech and language disorders.

Speech and Language Disorders

A speech disorder is a problem relating to the manner of producing sounds. While a language disorder refers to the problem of placing together a string of words to express an idea.

Some of the common speech disorders are the following

Articulation - Relating to the aspect of actual sound production and syllables, the error lies within the fact that the word being pronounced cannot be communicated effectively.

Fluency - A condition where in there is a disruption of the normal flow of speech such as in the case of stuttering.

Resonance - Concerns pitch, volume or voice quality. An error in these factors can distract the listener from effectively understanding what the speaker is trying to say. These types of disorders may also cause the speaker a certain amount of pain when speaking.

Dysphagia / oral feeding problems - This concerns problems with drool, swallowing action and eating.

While here are some common language disorders:

Receptive disorders - This concerns problems with understanding and/ or processing of the spoken language.

Expressive - In this case, there is difficulty in being able to formulate a complete thought using words and having a hard time being able to communicate.

With that being said, these conditions require a speech and language voice therapy due to the fact that these conditions can be corrected. But always keep in mind that it is best to take action at the earliest possible stage to minimize the repercussions of these disorders.

The Speech and Language Voice Therapy

So what is speech and language voice therapy and what do the therapists do? Informally termed as speech therapist, these are trained professionals that have studied human communication. They have adept knowledge regarding the development and various disorders within the art of human communication. It is a requirement that a speech therapist hold a masteral degree and certification or license in the said field and a clinical competency certification from the American Speech Language Hearing Association (ASHA).

These speech therapists assess the manner of speaking, cognitive communication, skills in feeding and swallowing in order to determine if there are any problems. They check from problems with regards to the fluency, voice consistency, receptivity, articulation and expression. After wards, they figure out a way to treat the identified condition.

Therapeutic Strategies

There are several strategies that speech therapist could proceed with once a disorder has been diagnosed.

Language intervention
In this form of therapy the patient is encourage to speak in order to stimulate language development. The therapist could also set examples in order to guide the patient's pronunciation. Repetitive exercises are also performed to build up the speaking and language skills.

Articulation therapy
This type of therapy involves sound production hence a lot of the exercises done would involve practices or correct sound pronunciation. Certain specific letters and sounds such as that of "r" are given more focus and emphasis.

Therapy for oral-motor/feeding and swallowing
For this therapeutic method, several exercises are included into the treatment namely, tongue, lip and jaw exercises and also facial massages in order to work out those oral muscles. There are also tests involving the different food textures and temperatures in order to become aware of these food items during activities like eating and swallowing.

The Need for Therapy
So if you are wondering why there could possibly be a need for this type of treatment, the answer is simple. If these conditions are left untreated for a long period of time, it could affect your everyday life. There could be problems with regards to hearing, expression, speaking and even intellectual thinking.

More Information On Speech and Language Voice

  1. Speech & Language Stimulation Center
  2. Voice Disorders