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Speech Therapy

What is Pediatric Speech Therapy? 

Speech therapy is a service provided by a speech-language pathologist that helps improve a person’s verbal and nonverbal communication skills. Depending on the area of deficit, speech therapy may focus on improving several different areas such as speech production, understanding and expressing language, social skills, and feeding or swallowing. A speech-language pathologist is a professional who works to develop and maximize the child’s speech, language, and feeding skills in a motivating play setting with the goal of increasing their independence and ability to communicate. 

Speech therapy services address the following skills/diagnoses: 

  • Receptive language skills: Understanding language (following directions)

  • Expressive language skills: Producing language to communicate wants and needs 

  • Social skills (engagement, body language, turn-taking, topic maintenance) 

  • Articulation (speech sounds)

  • Motor speech disorders (Apraxia of speech)

  • Fluency (stuttering)

  • Voice

  • Auditory processing (CAPD)

  • Executive functioning

  • Feeding (picky eaters/problem feeders, dysphagia)

  • Play skills 

How do I know if my child needs speech therapy?

Your child may benefit from speech therapy if he/she:

  • Is not meeting expected developmental speech-language milestones during the first 15-24 months of life

    • (i.e., cooing, babbling, producing first word(s), putting two words together)

  • Does not exhibit appropriate ​play skills with toys. 

  • Difficulty coordinating and planning oral motor movements (tongue, lips) to formulate sounds/syllables.

  • Has weak oral motor movements (i.e., weak jaw and/or tongue strength)

  • Has difficulty producing various sounds:

    • Substitutions ( i.e., “f” for “th,” “w” for “l”)

    • Distortions (i.e., the “s” sound may be a lisp or sounds messy)

    • Omissions (i.e., the word “cat” is produced “ca.”)

  • Has difficulty following directions. 

  • Has difficulty formulating grammatically correct sentences, understanding word meanings, answering wh- questions etc. 

  • Has difficulty in social situations (i.e., turn-taking, eye-contact, initiating conversations with others, topic maintenance, perspective taking). 

  • Has a limited food repertoire, for example to texture, such as puree. 

  • Has disfluent speech or exhibits stuttering. 

  • Has poor vocal quality (Hoarse voice, vocal nodules, etc.). 

  • Has difficulty processing auditory input. 

Do our SLPs have special training? 
  • All of our SLPs are Licensed in the State of Illinois, 

  • Received a Master-level degree from an accredited speech therapy program. 

  • Obtained a Certificate of Clinical Competence from the American Speech and Hearing Association (ASHA). 

  • Value continued education to maximize services provided with the following treatment techniques:

    • Feeding (S.O.S Approach to Feeding, Get Permission Approach, Food Chaining)

    • Apraxia of Speech (PROMPT, Kaufman K-SLP Methods)

    • Oral motor treatment (Beckman Oral Motor Protocol)

    • Autism (PECS, SCERTS Model, Affect-Based Language Curriculum)

    • Social Skills (Social Thinking)

    • Neuro-Developmental Treatment Approach