If you haven’t ever been to a speech pathologist then you may be wondering what to expect in a speech therapy session. Whether you’re a parent looking to help your child overcome speech difficulties or an individual striving to improve your communication skills, the journey to finding your voice is an exciting one. Today, we’ll give you some insider information on what to expect during a speech therapy session and how it works when the session is online.
The Building Blocks of Speech Therapy
Before we dive into what goes on in a speech therapy session, let’s lay the foundation. What is speech therapy, and who can benefit from it?
Speech therapy is like a magic toolbox filled with tools and techniques to help individuals of all ages improve their communication skills. Whether it’s improving pronunciation, addressing challenges in verbal and non-verbal communication skills, improving voice quality, or supporting clients with social and conversation skills, speech therapy can be a great support for you.
The First Session: Building Trust and Rapport
With Therapy Connect, you will get started with a clinical service appointment on a video call with a senior practitioner to collect some background information, confirm your therapy support needs and develop a service plan for your unique needs.
As Therapy Connect is an online allied health provider and all our speech therapy appointments are conducted online, we may match you with a therapist who is on the other side of the country – that’s the beauty of technology!
Before your first appointment, you’ll be sent a link to the video call and reminder messages leading up to your appointments. Your first appointment with your speech therapist is about getting to know each other and building a foundation of trust and rapport. You can expect a warm and welcoming session where you can feel comfortable sharing your communication challenges.
Your speech therapist will likely ask questions about your medical history, communication concerns, and goals. This is your opportunity to open up and let them know what you hope to achieve through therapy.
A Typical Speech Therapy Session
Your speech therapy journey begins with your speech pathologist working with you to understand your unique challenges and design sessions that work towards your individual goals. During the first session, you can expect:
- Case History: We will start by asking questions about your medical history, communication challenges, and goals. This helps us to gain insight into your specific needs.
- Speech and Language Evaluation: You’ll undergo various tests and exercises to assess your speech and language skills. These assessments help us understand your challenges.
- Observation: The practitioner will observe your communication abilities in various contexts, such as one-on-one conversations, reading, or even using technology.
Once you get started, your speech therapist will work with you to establish clear and achievable goals. These goals will be tailored to your unique needs. We will look at your:
- Long-term Objectives: We help you to create realistic long-term goals, such as improving your speech clarity or fluency.
- Short-term Milestones: We find it helps to break down long-term objectives into smaller, achievable milestones so you can track your progress and stay motivated.
- Communication Needs: We will align your goals with your daily communication needs, ensuring that speech therapy sessions are practical and relevant to your life.
Techniques and Exercises
With goals in place, your speech therapy sessions are focused on improving specific aspects of your communication. Here are some techniques and exercises you can expect:
- Articulation Drills: For speech sound difficulties, we engage in exercises that target specific speech sounds.
- Fluency Techniques: For those dealing with stuttering or other fluency challenges, we use techniques including relaxation exercises and controlled speech rate practices.
- Voice Exercises: Individuals with vocal concerns will work on exercises to improve pitch, tone, and overall voice quality.
- Language Development Activities: If language development is your focus, you’ll engage in activities like word games, storytelling, and comprehension exercises.
- Augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) tools: AAC tools can be very helpful for individuals who can’t rely on their verbal communication and can include gestures and manual signs.
In today’s digital age, speech therapy has evolved to harness the power of technology, making it more accessible and effective. Therapy Connect has been delivering online Speech Therapy for more than 7 years and has partnered with Sydney University and the University of Queensland to write the guidelines for online therapy.
Online therapy is just like traditional speech therapy that is conducted face-to-face. Here’s what you can expect:
- Online Sessions: With Therapy Connect, you can attend sessions from the comfort of your own home, eliminating the need for travel.
- Engaging Technology: There are many speech therapy apps and specialised software that our therapists use to make sessions engaging and interactive, plus you can use these tools between sessions.
- Progress Tracking: Technology allows our speech therapists to monitor your progress more closely, adapting your therapy plan as needed to ensure we get the best possible outcomes for our clients.
Speech therapy is not a one-size-fits-all process; it’s a journey that takes time and dedication. Expect ongoing support from your therapist as you work towards your goals. This support includes:
- Regular Progress Reviews: Periodic assessments ensure that you’re on the right track and help identify any areas that may need adjustment in your therapy plan.
- Homework and Practice: Your therapist will provide exercises and activities for you to practice between sessions, reinforcing what you’ve learned.
- Emotional Support: Speech therapy can be emotionally challenging, but your therapist is there to provide encouragement, motivation, and a safe space to express your feelings.
As you progress through your speech therapy journey, you’ll experience moments of triumph, both big and small. These victories may include:
- Improved Clarity: You’ll notice your speech becoming clearer, making it easier for others to understand you.
- Enhanced Fluency: If fluency is an issue, you’ll find yourself speaking more smoothly and confidently.
- Vocal Quality Improvement: For individuals with vocal challenges, we work with you to improve your vocal quality.
- Confident Communication: Most importantly, we help our clients to build confidence as they improve their verbal and non-verbal communication skills.
The Benefits of Speech Therapy
Now that we’ve explored the elements of a speech therapy session, it’s essential to understand the significant benefits it can bring to individuals and their families.
Improved Communication Skills
The most obvious benefit of speech therapy is improved communication skills. Whether it’s clearer speech, enhanced language comprehension, or better social communication, speech therapy can make a significant difference in how individuals express themselves.
As communication skills improve, so does self-confidence. It is so satisfying for our speech therapists to help our clients to build their confidence as they improve their communication skills.
Better Academic Performance
For children, speech therapy can have a positive impact on their academic performance. Improved language skills can lead to better reading, writing, and overall academic success.
Enhanced Social Interaction
Effective communication is the key to successful social interactions. Speech therapy can equip individuals with the tools they need to build stronger relationships, both personally and professionally.
One of the great advantages of speech therapy with Therapy Connect is our personalised approach. Every speech therapy plan is tailored to an individual’s unique needs and goals so that we can work towards better outcomes.
Getting Started with Therapy Connect
At Therapy Connect, our mission is to make speech therapy accessible to everyone, no matter where you live in Australia. We offer online speech therapy sessions that can be conducted from the comfort of your own home, school or office. Here’s why you should choose Therapy Connect for your speech therapy needs:
Convenient Online Sessions
Therapy Connect offers online speech therapy sessions, making it easier than ever to access the support you need. Save time and money on travelling to and from appointments. We bring therapy to you, wherever you are.
Experienced and Compassionate Therapists
Our team of speech pathologists are highly qualified and has an average of ten years of work experience. We also pride ourselves on being deeply compassionate. We understand the challenges individuals face when it comes to communication, and we’re here to help.
Personalised Treatment Plans
Just like any journey, your path to improved communication is unique. At Therapy Connect, we create personalised treatment plans tailored to your specific needs and goals.
For children receiving speech therapy, we know that family involvement is crucial. We work closely with parents, caregivers, and the extended family to ensure that speech therapy strategies can be integrated into your daily routine.
Our evidence-based approach has proven time and time again that online therapy can be equally effective as in-person therapy. This article will discuss the benefits of online speech therapy and the impact it can have on the lives of people with disabilities.
Unleash Your Communication Potential
Speech therapy can be transformative in helping you to achieve your potential. Whether you’re working on articulation, fluency, voice, or language development, the process is a personalised one that focuses on your unique needs and goals.
Therapy Connect, as a pioneer in online speech therapy, offers a modern and accessible approach to this journey. With expert therapists, convenient online sessions, tailored programs, and cutting-edge technology, Therapy Connect is your partner in progress, helping you achieve your communication goals and find your voice in the world.