Have you struggled most of your life to communicate clearly with the people around you?
Are you having trouble swallowing because of a health condition?
Did you recently move to the DC area, and are finding your accent makes it difficult for people to understand you?
Have you or a loved one recently suffered through a stroke, traumatic brain injury, or another event that’s impeded your ability to communicate?
If so, Voz Speech Therapy can help.
Speech and language disorders among adults are more common than you might think. And while they can seriously impact with your ability to communicate, there is help.
Speech therapy treatments for adults can help you resolve your speech and language difficulties.
What Are Speech Therapy Treatments For Adults Like?
In most cases, adults who are seeking speech therapy services are doing it for the first time. As a result, you may not know what to expect. So, here’s what to expect.
Your first session will mostly be an evaluation. The goal here is to give your speech therapist a chance to evaluate your individual situation and get a better understanding of how best to help you. During this session, your speech therapist will ask you a lot of questions with the idea of getting a full picture of your health history.
This helps them understand the presence of any contributing factors to your speech or language difficulties which you might not consider.
They will also ask you or your primary caregiver about what your speech & language goals are.
After that, they will work with you to provide some exercises you can do at home, as well as a plan designed to work away at addressing your concerns.
The number of sessions you’ll need varies widely depending on the type and severity of your speech issue, as well as any underlying medical conditions, your age, and how well you stick to the treatment plan.
Common Disorders Adult Speech Therapy Helps With
There are a wide variety of different speech and language disorders. Some are acquired later in life, while others result from childhood issues that should have been treated with speech therapy for children but for whatever reason they never were.
Regardless, we can help.
Read on below to find out what conditions adult speech therapy can help with.
Speech sound disorders refer to difficulties in creating the sounds required for speech. There are a number of different ones, and in most a speech therapist can help. These include:
Dysarthria is a condition where the muscles you use to create speech are either weakened or paralyzed altogether. A speech therapist can help you learn how to use other muscles to create similar sounds, as well as to strengthen the weakened muscles.
Acquired Apraxia Of Speech
Apraxia of speech is a disorder with similar symptoms of dysarthria. The difference is in the cause. While dysarthria is linked with a muscle issue, apraxia is an issue with the part of the brain that controls those muscles. This is different from childhood apraxia of speech in that it’s acquired later in life, often due to a stroke or traumatic brain injury.
Selective mutism is an anxiety disorder where people are physically unable to speak in certain situations. In others, they’re able to speak and fully comprehend the speech of others fluently.
Fluency disorders refer to interruptions in the smoothness and rate of speech.
All speakers speak with a lack of smoothness occasionally, but when it happens with greater frequency it can suggest there’s a deeper speech disorder at play.
Adult speech therapy can help. These include:
Stuttering is the most common fluency disorder, and one of the most common speech disorders in general.
People who stutter generally know what they want to say, but have trouble actually making the sounds necessary to say it. A speech therapist for adults can help.
With cluttering, people have either a rapid or an irregular speech rate. They might collapse words together, have unusual gaps in their speech, or meander and frequently shift topics. A speech therapist for adults can help.
Expressive & receptive language disorders are disorders where people have trouble communicating verbally (the expressive part) or have trouble understanding language (the receptive part).
A speech therapist can help. These disorders include:
Aphasia is losing the ability to understand and create spoken language. It’s usually caused by a traumatic brain injury, stroke, or other such event.
If someone you love is experiencing aphasia, speech therapy for adults can help them recover all or part of their language abilities so they are able to communicate their wants and needs.
Social Pragmatic Communication Disorders
A social pragmatic communication disorder is where someone has difficulty understanding the more subtle nuances of speech. This can impact relationships and a person’s quality of life. An adult speech therapist can help.
Transgender people may have negative feelings toward their voice, feeling as though it doesn’t match the way they feel they ought to sound. A speech therapist can help.
Voice Therapy For Trans Men
Transgender men and trans masculine nonbinary people may want to create a voice that feels more masculine. While testosterone therapy will naturally deepen one’s voice, it may not go far enough for some, and others may not be able or interested in testosterone therapy. In both cases, transgender voice therapy for trans men can help.
Voice Therapy For Trans Women
For many trans women and trans feminine nonbinary people, their voice is their greatest trigger for feelings of gender dysphoria. And unfortunately, estrogen therapy doesn’t reverse the effects of testosterone on one’s vocal folds. However, through voice therapy for trans women, you can still create a convincingly feminine sounding voice.
Other conditions an adult speech therapist can help with include:
Learning & reading disabilities
And many more
If you or a loved one is dealing with one of the above disorders, it can be frustrating and even overwhelming. However, there is hope.
Research shows that early intervention speech therapy is ideal, but even after that early window, speech therapy for adults can still help.
Through speech therapy treatments for adults, you can manage their speech or language disorder in a way that allows you to communicate clearly and with confidence.
Book Your Appointment With Voz Speech Therapy Today
If you’re an adult who’s dealt with a speech disorder your entire life, you might feel like it’s just how things are for you.
Or if you or a loved one have acquired a speech or language disorder later in life, it might feel overwhelming or even hopeless.
But either way, there is hope.
Speak with one of our speech therapists today. We’ll help you understand how you can overcome your speech & language difficulties.