Speech Pathology may be a new term that has been thrown at you and you may be confused by also hearing the term Speech Therapy. Well, they are both the same thing! Speech Pathology or Speech Therapy may be a service that you need to have for your child. Speech Pathologists or Speech Therapists are therapists who are trained to study, diagnose and work with a person or child who may have communication and swallowing disorders.
Communication disorders that can be diagnosed and treated by a Speech Pathologist include speaking difficulties, listening, language, reading, writing, stuttering, voice projection. These communication disorders can be associated with a number of conditions including developmental delay, stroke, injuries to the brain, intellectual disabilities, Cerebral Palsy, hearing loss – both permanent and temporary and even those suffering from dementia!
Speech Pathologists can help with sensory issues as well as those that have difficulty with swallowing food and drink.
FAQs – Speech Therapy/Pathology
How Much Is Speech Therapy/Pathology?
This is a tough question to exactly say how much you will pay for Speech Therapy Sessions and Assessments. My son’s Speech Therapy is covered under his NDIS Plan which means that I don’t pay for these services. I did some research into private Speech Therapy and this is what I found.
On average, for a new referral, the first visit can cost anywhere from $200-$500. After the initial visit, depending on your child’s needs, visits can cost anywhere from $50+ per half hour session to $120+ for an hourly session.
How Many Sessions Will My Child Need?
Again, this is a very tough question to answer! It is pretty much saying “how long is a piece of string?”.
Not all children are the same and therefore they need different amounts of sessions. My son Coleby has been doing Speech Therapy for about 5 years now. We do a 1-hour session every 4 weeks at home after school.
What Kinds Of Speech And Language Disorders Are There In Children?
- Speech Sound Disorders – this refers to the child having trouble pronouncing sounds. Sounds are important for developing reading and language skills.
- Language Processing Disorders – this refers to the child not being able to understand what is being said or not being able to respond.
- Stuttering – this refers to the fluency of speech being interrupted by repetition of sounds.
Will Speech And Language Disorders Affect Learning?
The easy answer is Yes! Yes, it will affect learning as language development is the basis for reading, speaking, and communication etc.
Without language and speech development children struggle at school as they have trouble learning to read, listening, writing and communicating with others.
Will Tests Do A Speech Therapist/Pathologist Do?
Tests can be formal and informal. Formal tests can test a child’s comprehension, understanding, vocabulary etc. Informal tests can include caregiver/parent surveys, checklists etc.
What Will A Speech Therapist/Pathologist Work On With My Child?
Once Assessed, needs will be evaluated and a plan developed to work on specified areas. These areas can include:
- Development of social skills
- Development of communication skills
- Development of Language
- Literacy Skills
- Eating and Drinking Skills
At What Age Should I Seek Speech Therapy For My Child?
If you have any concerns about your child’s language development and communication skills at any time, you should seek a speech therapy evaluation, just to be sure!
How Do I Know If My Child Needs Speech Therapy?
As you child grows, there are milestones that are generally reached. These are the same as sitting, crawling, walking etc but for listening, understanding and talking.
Other reasons, that you may be concerned about in regards to listening, understanding and speech development can include:
- Your child is not able to be understood by both yourself and others around them
- Your child shows frustration with not being able to express themselves or find the words to use
- Simple words are hard to pronounce
- Your child has a stutter
- Your child is lacking in social skills
- Your child is non-verbal or only slight babble is occurring
Do you have any other questions about speech therapy/pathology that you need an answer to? Please feel free to comment below I would love to try to help you out! The only question you don’t ask is the silly question!