In the United States of America, Speech Language Pathologist (SLP) is used to refer to a person who is specialized in communication disorders. In the UK, the title Speech and Language Therapist (SLT) is used. Here in Kuwait, both terms are used interchangeably.
To call yourself an SLP or SLT in Kuwait, you must have a bachelor’s degree in Communication Disorders, which is also the same in the UK. However, several states in America require a person to hold a masters degree to be officially referred to as a SLP.
Following the initial phone call that occurs between you and the speech therapist; the speech therapist will determine what kind of assessments should be used in the assessment session, which lasts 45-60 minutes.
With children, it is very important that the speech therapist establishes a good rapport with the child. This allows for a smoother session and a better assessment result. This is why the assessment may happen over multiple sessions with children.
Following the assessment session, the speech therapist will determine what kind of treatment will best suit your needs or your child’s needs. This treatment plan will have to be approved by you as the patient or caregiver of a patient before it is applied.
The treatment session may be 30-50 minutes long depending on your needs and may be 2 to 4 times per week also depending on your need for treatment. This will all be discussed prior to beginning treatment.
Speech therapy does not use any form of medication. We apply evidence-based therapy techniques and exercises to help develop communication.
Anyone who has a communication or swallowing problems, regardless of its’ origin may receive speech ad language therapy sessions.
There is no age range for the patients we see. However, unless a child is deemed “at-risk” for any future speech and language and swallowing problems then parents are usually asked to wait till the child reaches a certain age before treatment commences. Again, this all depends on your individual situation and what your child may or may not have.
People come for speech and language therapy for many different reasons. However, the purpose of their visit is always the same; they wish to improve their communication with their family and peers, or that of a loved one. Some of the issues listed below may be a reason to visit a speech and language therapist:
Unintelligible speech: sounds may be pronounced incorrectly; voice may be hypernasal or hyponasal; phonological awareness may be limited; speech may be stuttered or cluttered.
Language delay : a child may be behind in their receptive or expressive language compared to their peers.
Heavy and slurred speech following a stroke or a traumatic brain injury or with the diagnosis of a progressive neurological disorder.
Difficulty in naming objects.
Evidence-based practice shows that speech and language therapy does work. Many studies have been conducted to test the different aspects of speech and language therapy and results have always been favorable.
According to the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, many patients overcome their problems with different styles of therapy. Speech therapy is completely effective if targeted to patients with specific deficits and needs and is provided intensively.
Yes. We at FSRI take a person’s confidentiality and privacy very seriously. Our speech and language therapists adhere to the code of ethics put forth by the American Speech/Language Hearing Association (ASHA), which requires that your privacy and confidentiality be maintained.
In some cases, we may require you to sign release forms to allow us to view reports done by other professionals in your favor, while maintaining your privacy.
If you feel your child is underachieving in school, difficult to understand by his peers and his family, frustrated at his inability to be understood, and acting out negatively in response to that frustration then speech and language therapy may be helpful. The first step in a speech therapy session with a child is to have an initial interview with the parents to collect information on the child’s developmental history and current level. With that information the speech therapist can establish a rapport with that child to move on to the next step, which is assessing the child’s speech and language abilities.
The clinician will interview you regarding you or your child’s background: birth, developmental, medical history, family, and educational history. You will be asked to sign releases to obtain copies of past testing; medical reports and school records. A copy of the current report card and your child’s work samples are also helpful to your speech therapist.
There are many things that you can do at home to help overcome your speech problems or to maintain your communication abilities. Homework is given following every speech therapy session you receive that is explained to you by your speech therapist to help generalize your improvement or that of your child’s beyond the clinical setting.
Evidence-based practice shows that if a patient does not do homework then there is a decreased chance of maintaining the level of improvement you or your child has achieved within speech therapy sessions which is something that we at FSRI try our best to avoid.
The number of sessions will be discussed between you and your speech therapist once a treatment plan has been established. The number will differ for each individual person.
The cost of all our services depends on what exactly is needed. After we speak with you, we will know more about what the problem is and can give you a clearer idea of what we recommend and what it will cost.
However, fees should not deter you from seeking help at FSRI. We are a non-profit organization with a clear mission of providing the highest quality services for the entire community. We are able to accommodate all income levels and we never decline our services because of fees.