Speech and Language Therapy
An estimated 1 in 10 children experience a communication difficulty. The type of difficulty can be very different, for example:
- Difficulty with speech sounds. It might be hard to work out what a child is trying to say if they have problems with specific sounds - for example, a 4-year-old who says 'tat' instead of 'cat'.
- Problems with spoken language. Some children use less vocabulary than their peers or their utterances are jumbled and immature. They may also have problems understanding spoken language.
- Social communication difficulties. For some children the problem lies with the pragmatic aspects of communication, for example using and interpreting facial expression and eye contact. They may tend to take things too literally.
- Stammering: children who get 'stuck' when talking. They might repeat part of a word or a whole word or struggle to start off a sentence.
- Some children have a specific communication difficulty in just one area and generally good development otherwise, therapists also see children whose speech and language difficulties are part of additional learning, physical or medical difficulties.
- Specialist knowledge of speech and oral anatomy enables therapists to work with babies and children who have difficulty in eating, drinking or swallowing. A child who is inclined to choke easily on lumpy food, for example, may be referred to an SaLT, whose role will be to assess and provide advice. This may involve liaison with other professionals such as a dietitian.
All staff at Prospect House are highly trained in a variety of communication techniques and this links in with our Total Communication Policy. Below are some helpful resources and further guidance.