What is Speech Therapy?
A speech language pathologist works to improve your child’s ability to communicate and to manipulate food and liquids involved with feeding. Language development begins at a very early age. There is receptive language, which is the ability to understand language. And there is expressive language, which is the ability to produce communication through verbalization, or sign language, or a communication device. A speech therapist is also concerned with your child’s mouth mechanics.
A speech language pathologist evaluates your child’s understanding of language and ability to communicate through non-verbal and verbal gestures. The therapist will also evaluate your child’s cognitive status, which is the thought and learning process. A speech language pathologist also evaluates your child’s ability to chew and swallow food and liquids. The therapist, along with your input, will develop goals for your child and a plan of how to achieve these goals.
Children with RTS tend to have difficulty communicating with people due to the thought process of communication and not due to articulation problems (the mechanics of how the mouth works). If your child is having problems with communication, then a total communication approach should be in place, which consists of the promotion of language development through spoken language, picture boards, sign language and/or augmentative devices.
Speech therapy sessions are geared towards language development through pictures, books, singing, respiration activities, babbling, speaking and communication devices. Therapy can also focus on feeding skills and how to coordinate your child’s mouth musculature to chew and swallow food and liquids.