Electric City Therapy
OUR SERVICES

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Free Phone Consultation

If you have concerns about your child’s speech, we would love to talk with you over the phone. Our Phone Consultations are free and will allow us to discuss your concerns.

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Evaluation

We conduct comprehensive speech and language evaluations utilizing a variety of the most current standardized and non-standardized tools.  It will help determine if a speech, language, or swallowing delay/disorder is present, so we can provide the most appropriate, effective, and efficient treatment.

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Treatment

Our treatment plans are specialized to each child’s individual diagnosis. Children who start treatment at an early age, before they reach 5 years of age, tend to have better results than those who begin later in life. Beginning children earlier helps to combat the incorrect patterns of speech before they become too ingrained. Starting treatment later in life does not mean that children will not overcome their speech problem, the process will just be slower as they have grown used to the way in which they speak.

EASy AS 1..2..3..

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Articulation (Speech Sounds) 

Speech Sounds disorders refer to any difficulty with perception, motor production or phonological representation of speech sounds and speech segments. They are categorized into Functional speech sound disorders which have no known case, and Organic speech sound disorders which can be caused by neurological, structural or sensory factors.

  • Functional Speech Sound Disorders are historically divided into two main categories, articulation disorders and phonological disorders. Articulation disorders focus on errors made during production of individual speech sounds while phonological disorders focus on predictable errors made during the production of more than one sound. 

  • Functional Speech Sound Disorders include: 

    • Omissions - certain sounds are omitted during the pronunciation of a word. For example, the ending sound of the word “cup” may be omitted to produce just “cu.” 

    • Substitutions - one or more sounds are substituted for other sounds during speech, could lead to a loss in phonemic contrast. Words such as “thing” are pronounced as “sing”

    • Additions - one or more sounds are added to a word 

    • Distortions - sounds are altered 

    • Syllable - level errors - weak syllable are deleted 

 
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Phonological Processes

A form of speech disorder in which there is difficulty organizing the patterns of sounds in the brain which results in an inability to correctly form the sounds of words.  For example, this results in a child who may delete one or more sounds at the beginning of words or only use one consonant in a word with a two-consonant sounds, or they may replace one letter sound with another. 

 
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Receptive & Expressive Language 

Receptive language refers to how your child understands words and language. It involves gaining information and meaning from routine, visual information within the environment, sounds and words, concepts such as size, shape, colours and time, grammar and written information. Expressive language is the use of words, sentences, gestures and writing to convey meaning and messages to others. 

 
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ATTE

Deafness in children can be identified very early into infancy. Most children receive a hearing loss screening before they leave the hospital after birth to identify any potential hearing loss. Babies should be screened for hearing loss no later than 1 month of age. Some children may fail the initial screening due to issues other than actual hearing problems, oftentimes for reasons related to delivery.

Signs of deafness in infants can include: 

  • Not being startled by loud noises

  • Not turning towards sounds after 6 months of age

  • Not saying small words like “mama” or “dada” by the age of one

  • No change in emotion when spoken to.

  • No response to name being called

  • Not paying attention to music being played

Hearing impairment can impact your child’s ability to develop speech, language and communication skills so it is very important to address their hearing loss as early as possible. The earlier your child’s hearing loss is identified the earlier you can start treatment for them. 

Cochlear implants can improve hearing for those who have severe hearing loss. Cochlear implants deliver sounds to the hearing (auditory) nerve and bypass the damaged portions of the ear. The processor, which sits behind the ear exteriorly, captures sound signals and sends them to a receiver implanted under the skin in the same location. The receiver then sends the signals to electrodes planted in the inner ear, which stimulate the auditory nerve and directs them to the brain. The brain then works to interpret these signals into sounds which takes time and training as they are not received like normal hearing. Children as young as six to 12 months old can benefit from cochlear implants. 

 
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Social-Interactive Language

I am a paragraph. I am a paragraph. I am a paragraph. I am a paragraph.I am a paragraph. I am a paragraph. I am a paragraph. I am a paragraph. I am a paragraph. I am a paragraph. I am a paragraph. I am a paragraph. I am a paragraph. I am a paragraph.I am a paragraph. I am a paragraph. I am a paragraph. I am a paragraph. I am a paragraph. I am a paragraph. I am a paragraph. I am a paragraph. I am a paragraph. I am a paragraph.I am a paragraph. I am a paragraph. I am a paragraph.

 
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Fluency

Fluency refers to the ease at which one is able to produce sounds in order to pronounce a word. It is common for people to use fillers in their speech, such as “um” or “like”, these are called typical disfluencies or nonfluencies. 

A fluency disorder is characterized by an interruption in the flow of speech from an atypical rate, rhythm or disfluency. Those with fluency disorders often faced mental health impacts from their struggle with speaking fluently.

  • Stuttering - usually begins in childhood, with 95% of children who stutter starting to do so before they are four years old. The onset of stuttering may be sudden or progressive and it can seem to go away suddenly only to reappear sometime later. 

    • Many people are familiar with the effects of stuttering as it is the most common fluency disorder. Stuttering includes: 

      • Repeating sounds, syllables or monosyllabic words - “W-w-where’s the dog,” “He’s at-at-at home”

      • Prolongment of consonants  - “Sssssssam’s here”

      • Blocks - silent fixation or inability to initiate sounds

  • Cluttering - is identified as problems with speech rate, atypical pauses, maze behaviors, pragmatic issues, an unawareness of fluency problems, collapsing or omitting syllables, and language formulation issues. 

    • An individual who suffers from Cluttering may have times when they are not aware of the breakdown in their speech and therefore they will not try to clarify what they have said, leading to a fault in communication.

 

These disfluencies with speech can lead sufferers to have negative reactions to speaking, avoid speaking, and have physical tension surrounding speaking. It can also lead individuals to suffer from psychological, emotional, social and functional side effects. These individuals can experience social anxiety, a sense of loss of control, and negative feelings about themselves. 

 
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Voice

Voice is produced when air from the lungs passes through the vocal folds (vocal cords) in the larynx (voice box) causing the vocal folds to vibrate. This vibration produces a sound that is then modified and shaped by the vocal tract (throat, mouth and nasal passages). A voice problem or disorder can be caused by a problem in any part, or combination of parts, of this system. 

Symptoms of a voice disorder can include:

  • Hoarseness

  • Roughness

  • Breathiness

  • Strained voice

  • Weak voice

  • Vocal fatigue

  • Throat pain when speaking

A voice evaluation includes taking a detailed history of the problem, collecting acoustic and aerodynamic measures, and looking at vocal fold function using laryngeal videostroboscopy (a scope that goes in the mouth and looks down at the vocal folds). This information allows us to determine what is causing the voice problem and recommend appropriate treatment. It is usually necessary to see an otolaryngologist (ear, nose, and throat doctor) to determine any medical causes of the voice problem.

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PROMPT

P.R.O.M.P.T. (Prompts for Restructuring Oral Muscular Phonetic Targets) is a tactile-kinesthetic approach that uses touch cues to a client’s articulators (jaw, tongue, lips) to guide them through targeted words, phrases or sentences. This helps patients develop motor control while eliminating unnecessary muscle movements (i.e., jaw sliding, inadequate lip rounding, etc.). Therapists use special hand cues (called prompts) to show patients the correct sequence of articulatory movements, and to help them achieve the correct sequence of movements independently. For more information on P.R.O.M.P.T., please visit: http://promptinstitute.com

 
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Debra Beckman-Oral Motor Protocol

Debra Beckman-Oral Motor Protocol is an assessment and treatment tool used to determine and treat oral motor delays and disorders. Intervention provides assisted movement to activate muscle movements and build oral strength.  The focus of these interventions is to increase oral response to pressure and movement, range, strength, variety and control of movement to the lips, cheeks, jaw and tongue. For more information on Beckman-Oral Motor, please visit: http://www.beckmanoralmotor.com

 
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The Kaufman Speech to Language Protocol

The Kaufman Speech to Language Protocol (K-SLP) is a proven treatment approach for children with childhood apraxia of speech (CAS), other speech sound disorders, and expressive language challenges.  This treatment strategy was developed by Nancy Kaufman, M.A. CCC-SLP, who is a leading expert in the treatment of children with developmental apraxia of speech. The K-SLP focuses upon the child’s speech-motor skills, shaping the consonants, vowels and syllable shapes/gestures from what they are capable of producing toward higher levels of speech-motor coordination, giving them a functional avenue by which to become an effective vocal communicator.

 
 
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COMPLETE SPEECH

The Kaufman Speech to Language Protocol (K-SLP) is a proven treatment approach for children with childhood apraxia of speech (CAS), other speech sound disorders, and expressive language challenges.  This treatment strategy was developed by Nancy Kaufman, M.A. CCC-SLP, who is a leading expert in the treatment of children with developmental apraxia of speech. The K-SLP focuses upon the child’s speech-motor skills, shaping the consonants, vowels and syllable shapes/gestures from what they are capable of producing toward higher levels of speech-motor coordination, giving them a functional avenue by which to become an effective vocal communicator.