Signs & Symptoms of Swallowing Problems

If you observe any of the following, a swallowing evaluation by a
speech-language pathologist may be necessary:

• Coughing or choking periods during or after eating or drinking

• Difficulty chewing and/or swallowing certain food textures
(e.g., hard, chewy or doughy foods)

• Foods or medication sticking in the throat

• Wet/gurgling vocal quality during or after eating or drinking

• Drooling

• Pocketing food inside cheeks

• Reflux after meals

• Excessive amount of time to eat a meal

• Recent unexplained weight loss

For more information, Call:
Nampa North Site ~ 1709 Caldwell Blvd., Nampa, ID 83651. Phone: (208) 489-4480
Talus Site ~ 3875 W. Overland Rd., Meridian, ID 83642. Phone: (208) 489-5060

Living with Multiple Sclerosis: What Speech Therapy Can do for You!

There is a common misconception that a speech-language pathologist only treats speech production and articulation.  However, when working with individuals with a neurological diagnosis, we target so much more.

Multiple Sclerosis (MS) affects approximately 1 in 700 people or about 400,000 Americans with over 1,500 Idahoans diagnosed. Many people go without treatment or help because they don’t know or understand what can be done to help them on a personalized basis.

Speech-language pathology or speech therapy is designed to target a number of parameters that affect those persons with MS in all stages of the disease.

 

Speech:

-Articulation/precision

            -Exercises to strengthen and stretch facial muscles

            -Breath support/breath grouping

            -Compensatory devices or use of alternative communication methods if appropriate.

Swallowing:

          -VitalStim® (electrical stimulation to swallow muscles)

            -Swallow strategies or use of modified utensils, posture, body positioning, etc

            -Diet Modifications

            -Exercise program to increase lip, tongue and throat muscles

-Voice Therapy

            -Increase loudness

            -Increase vocal stamina

            -Quality of Voice

-Lee Silverman Voice Treatment® (a treatment developed for people with Parkinson disease which has also been noted to improve voice quality in people with MS)

-Cognitive Therapy

            -Memory

            -Word finding

            -Occupational skills

            -Problem Solving

            -Sequencing

            -Processing skills, “clarity of thought”

 

Speech therapy is very individualized and treatment plans are established according to each person’s symptoms, goals and everyday needs.  Some therapy treatments require certification in those areas.  It is important to speak with your physician or neurologist to determine what treatments may be appropriate for you.  There may be hope and help waiting for you in a speech therapist near by.

Allison Berglund, MS, CCC-SLP

Talus Clinic, Meridian

489-5060

 

 

 

 

Find Your Voice: Lee Silverman Voice Treatment (LSVT®)

Nearly every person (89%) with Parkinson disease will have problems with speech that start early in the disease process and progressively diminish quality of life:

·        Soft Voice

·        Mumbled speech

·        Monotone speech

·        Hoarse voice

·        Decreased vocal stamina

Medicine and surgery may dramatically improve the other symptoms of Parkinson disease, but they don’t help speech disorders. The only way to improve speech is by speech therapy.

The LSVT ® is an intense 1 hour a session, 4 times per week, 4 week course of therapy that teaches people with Parkinson disease to develop the strength required to speak at a normal vocal loudness. (may be modified to fit your schedule)

LSVT® teaches self-empowerment by improving the ability to communicate and thereby enhancing quality of life.

The strong theoretical and clinical research base behind LSVT® has demonstrated substantive results:

o       Improved vocal loudness

o       Improved intelligibility

o       More facial expression

o       Improved ability to swallow

o       Better neural functioning (PET)

For more information, visist: www.lsvt.org and to schedule an appointment, call 208.489.5060

Allison Berglund, MS, CCC-SLP

May is Better Hearing and Speech Month

Anything that impairs your ability to communicate limits your life. Yet 14 million Americans have a speech or language problem, and many do not know that they can be helped.

If you stutter, have problems pronouncing certain sounds, or don’t always understand what people say to you, you could have a speech or language problem.

People of all ages have these problems. With proper treatment you can eliminate or minimize their impact. If you need to know more about speech and language problems, call a speech-language pathologist this May, Better Hearing and Speech Month.

SLIERS has many speech-lanuage patholgists.  For pediatrics call 489-5700 or 489-5880 and for adults call 489-5060.