Communication is often 95% nonverbal language. People send messages with eye contact, proximity, facial expressions, arms, and shoulders. What message are you sending? What message is someone sending to you? Some individuals do not pay attention to these cues and miss the messages or do not understand what it was meant to convey. Speech/Language therapy can help!
Does your voice often sound hoarse? Is it difficult to use your voice for long amounts of time? Does your voice have pitch breaks or get "squeaky?"
Vocal hygiene is important! Increase your water intake. Decrease caffeine. Avoid excessive coughing and throat clearing. Avoid yelling or using a loud voice. Try to give yourself vocal rest different times throughout your day. Avoid other vocal misuse behaviors such as growling, motor noises, etc that use your voice harshly.
Children and adults who commonly struggle with hoarse vocal quality may include: singers, cheerleaders, performers, coaches, teachers, and others.
Prolonged vocal misuse or abuse may lead to vocal nodules or other physiological changes. If you have concerns, contact a speech-language pathologist or talk to your physician.
Have you heard about speech/language therapy being provided online? This is called Telepractice. This is therapy provided live through a computer. It works well for some individuals; however, it is not the best model for everyone. It can be very effective and motivating for some. While others require direct contact for best therapeutic practice. PresenceLearning is an excellent online therapy provider for speech/language therapy and occupational therapy. Check this out~~ http://presencelearning.com/
Often times, children who have multiple ear infections end up with delayed speech/language development. During periods of time when an ear infection is present, sounds are often muffled, making it difficult for children to hear words clearly and difficult for them to monitor their own productions. This is when errored speech patterns develop. Some parents respond by saying, "I know he can hear me--I can say his name quietly and he still responds." Yes, he can hear you. However, speech sounds occur at different frequencies and loudness levels. Certain sounds may be masked by the fluid in his ears. He may be hearing you talk but may not be hearing all of the sounds and words clearly. With this in mind, it is very important to have a hearing evaluation prior to the initiation of speech therapy.
Parents often want to correct their child's speech sounds by having him repeat the correct way to say a word. Then, often times the child incorrectly says the word again...and again. This doesn't seem to help. Here is my recommendation: just model the correct pronunciation and leave it at that. This accomplishes two things: 1) It reassures your child that you understood his message. 2) It models the correct speech sound production. Do not have your child try to correctly produce words unless you have been guided by a speech-language pathologist to do so! Good intentions can sometimes lead to more frustration.
When a child has a language delay, parents often ask what they can do to help. Turn off the T.V. or computer. Talk. All the time. Talk about what you are doing. Do not expect your child to respond. Talk about each step you are doing when you make breakfast. Talk about brushing teeth. Talk about getting dressed. Talk about what you see out the window when you are driving in the car. Talk about...things you see in your backyard, the clouds in the sky, supper, bath time. Talk about everything--even when you think your child is not paying attention. Children often learn from what is happening in their environment!
I am a speech-language pathologist. And I am a mom. I understand what it feels like to want your child to succeed.