Choosing the Right Speech Therapy Supplies for Pediatrics
Choosing the Right Speech Therapy Supplies for Pediatrics
May 25, 2023
From helping young patients gain communication skills to helping them learn to speak with confidence, there are so many benefits that come from providing effective pediatric speech therapy. However, it’s important to have all of the essential supplies on hand in order for these speech therapy sessions to be successful.
Knowing what specific materials your pediatric patients need can make a big difference when it comes to facilitating successful outcomes. In this blog post, we'll take a look at some of the most essential speech therapy supplies for pediatrics and how they can help meet your clients’ speech-language goals.
The Importance of Speech Therapy for Pediatric Patients
Speech and language development is a crucial aspect of a child's overall growth and development. Some children, however, may experience difficulty in communicating effectively, which can delay their social, emotional, and academic growth.
Through personalized therapy sessions, children are provided with therapy materials that engage them in fun and interactive therapeutic activities. By using these tools to foster an encouraging and supportive environment, speech therapy can help children improve their speaking and listening abilities, ultimately enhancing their overall quality of life.
Choosing Speech Therapy Supplies
It is imperative to consider the specific needs of each patient to customize the therapy plan accordingly. Special attention should be paid to selecting materials that support individualized needs and enable children to develop their communication abilities systematically.
The types of speech supplies needed for each child depend on the specific speech-language difficulty for which they are being treated. Generally, there are several types of speech and language disorders:
- Articulation disorders: Problems with creating sounds in syllables or saying words incorrectly so that the child’s speech is difficult to understand.
- Fluency disorders: Problems with the flow of speech, such as stuttering or prolonging sounds and syllables.
- Resonance or voice disorders: Problems with the pitch, volume, or quality of voice.
- Receptive disorders: Problems with understanding or processing language.
- Expressive disorders: Problems with putting together words and phrases, limited vocabulary, or using language appropriately in social situations.
- Cognitive-communication disorders: Problems with communication skills that involve memory, attention, perception, organization, regulation, and problem-solving.
The type of speech therapy tools used also depends on any additional conditions the child may have, such as Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), cleft lip or palate, Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADD/ADHD), traumatic brain injury, and cognitive or developmental delays.
Involving Parents or Guardians
Those who practice speech therapy understand the importance of selecting the proper supplies for pediatric patients. Involving parents or guardians in this process, however, can increase the effectiveness of the treatment plan.
First, consult with the parents or guardians on what they believe their child needs to improve in their speech. Maybe they have noticed their child struggling with particular sounds or tone of voice, for example. This can provide more insight into the child's speech progress outside of therapy sessions.
Once the areas of improvement have been identified, suggest possible speech therapy supplies that can benefit the child. By choosing the products together, parents feel more involved in their child's development and are more likely to use the supplies at home. Ultimately, this will increase their engagement with their child's progress and promote better communication.
Types of Speech Therapy Supplies
Speech therapy sessions often involve interactive materials that can help stimulate language development in both a fun and engaging way. Using these tools in conjunction with effective therapy methods can help speech therapists achieve better outcomes. Below we will outline some of the most commonly used types of therapy supplies.
- Articulation Cards: Used to practice specific sounds and words that a child may be having difficulty with. These cards can include pictures of common words and phrases that the child can practice saying aloud. They come in various sizes and themes, such as animals and colors. Some products, such as the Photo Articulation Library, cover a wide range of categories in one set.
- Photo Cards: Used to help develop vocabulary, comprehension, and communication skills across a variety of subjects and skill levels. These can be as as basic as identifying nouns with a Picture Noun Cards set or as complex as determining what is out of place in everyday scenes with the ColorCards® What’s Wrong? set.
- Mirrors: Used so the child can see the movement of their mouth, lips, and tongue while speaking, providing immediate visual feedback for oral exercises. Mirrors are often included as a part of a kit. The Deluxe Therapy Kit, for example, also includes transparent card pockets for stimulus items such as picture cards, a write-on/wipe-off magnetic board, a convenient holder for business cards and tongue depressors, and a full-color instruction sheet.
- Toys and Games: Used to make the therapy session more interactive and enjoyable for the child. Playing quick, interactive games like "I spy" or "20 questions" can help kids practice their vocabulary skills, while games like "Charades" can help them work on association and pronunciation. More complex games can help with advanced speech and language skills. The ColorCards® Story Starters, for example, exercise a child’s skills in creative conversation and storytelling.
The selection and implementation of speech therapy supplies play a vital role in supporting young patients to achieve their goals faster. The effective use of speech and language therapy tools can help promote confidence and motivation in children, ultimately leading to more productive therapy that effectively strengthens their speech and language skills.
AliMed's Speech Therapy eCatalog offers a range of high-quality pediatric speech therapy supplies, including respiratory, swallowing, and assessment tools to aid the needs of speech and language pathologists.