What Does a Speech Therapist Do?
In speech therapy, the speech language pathologist (SLP) evaluates, diagnoses, and treats a variety of communication issues, such as stuttering or apraxia of speech, articulation issues and language impairments in kids or after a stroke. A speech-language pathologist, may also be called a speech therapist. What does a speech therapist do? Read on, the list is longer than you think.
Do Speech Therapists Need to be Licensed?
Yes! The process is lengthy and extensive. SLPs need two degrees including a Masters level degree, appropriate certification by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA.), and a state-issued license.
What Does a Speech Therapist Do?
While the term “speech therapist” includes the word “speech,” it’s a little misleading. As previously said, speech therapy is a broad field of study that encompasses many areas of improving and restoring a person’s communication abilities. Speech therapists deal with people of all ages and populations, from birth to until the end of life.
While speech therapists are trained to treat a wide range of disorders, many specialize in certain disorders. For example, not every speech therapist who works with toddlers to help them learn to speak is qualified or comfortable dealing with an older person who is having communication difficulties as a result of a stroke.
Some of the areas of expertise that SLPs treat include:
- Language Disorder: Having trouble understanding or using language (e.g., grammar and vocabulary)
- Speech Delay: When a child does not meet standard speech milestones for their age
- Voice Disorder: Issues with voice production that may impact pitch, volume, or quality of voice
- Stuttering: An adult or child may have trouble with smooth flowing speech production
- Apraxia of Speech: A neurological speech motor programing disorder that disrupts speech production and makes a person difficult to understand
- Lisping: An error in how the /s/ or /z/ sounds are pronounced
- Executive Function Disorder: Having a hard time planning, organizing, and making decisions. It can also help us self-regulate planning, shifting focus, and manage our time
- Social Communication Disorder: Difficulty communicating in social situations (also known as pragmatic language impairment)
Here are Some More Facts About Speech Therapy and SLPs:
- 5% to 10% of Americans may have communication disorders, costing the U.S. approximately $154–186 billion annually.
- 3 million+ Americans stutter
- Almost 1 million Americans have aphasia
- A two year old should be able to say simple 2 word sentences
- Speech therapists work in a variety of settings including early intervention programs, public schools, hospitals, outpatient clinics, skilled nursing facilities and corporations
- Online speech therapy works wonderfully for a majority of speech and language issues. Like telemedicine, it has been gaining popularity especially in light of COVID-19. Many people prefer the convenience it provides them as well as flexibility and affordability.
Therapy Works Together – Online Speech Therapy for Children and Adults
We care about every child and adult achieving their speech, language and communication goals. You can start speech therapy online now with a certified speech language therapist. We’ll discuss your personal needs, develop an individualized treatment plan, and schedule affordable online therapy sessions online at your convenience.