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What is speech-language pathology?

Speech-Language Pathology (also known as Speech Therapy) is an important health-related specialty concerned with human communication and swallowing. Speech-language therapy focuses on the evaluation and treatment of cognitive, communication, voice, speech, language, and swallowing disorders.  These disorders may be present at birth or acquired later in life by disease, illness, or neurological injury.

Who needs speech-language therapy?

  • Individuals with developmental speech, language, or social communication disorders: a condition where a child may not learn to produce or use speech/ language in the same trajectory as his or her peers
  • Individuals with voice disorders:  a problem with the coordination between a person’s breathing and their pitch, loudness, or quality of the sound
  • Individuals who stutter: a speech disorder in which the normal flow of speech is interrupted
  • Individuals with aphasia: a condition in which an individual has difficulty expressing thoughts and understanding others as a result of a stroke or head injury
  • Individuals with dysphagia:  a condition that results in difficulty swallowing due to injury, illness, or aging
  • Individuals with cognitive-communication disorders: a condition that results in problems with attention, organization of thoughts, planning, problem-solving, and memory as a result of stroke, brain injury, or aging

How can speech-language therapy help me?

Speech-language therapy can help individuals to:

  • Improve speech, language, and social communication skills to maximize functional and academic performance
  • Increase control of the voice and respiratory systems
  • Learn strategies to improve disfluent speech and cope with disfluency in conversation
  • Utilize strategies, techniques, and devices to facilitate functional communication following a stroke or brain injury
  • Rehabilitate muscles responsible for swallowing, learn strategies to compensate for swallowing difficulty, or modify food and drink textures to facilitate safe swallowing

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