When to Contact Speech Therapists for Help with Childhood Development
If your child shows signs of speech development difficulties, their school will probably initiate a visit with their own speech therapists.
But what if you feel that your pre-school child’s early speech development isn’t what it should be? You can arrange for your child to be assessed by a therapist or ask your child’s paediatrician for suggestions on what you can do to help develop better speech in your children.
If your child’s local doctor or paediatrician suggests making an appointment with a professional therapist, don’t delay.
Finding Speech Therapists on Your Own
In some cases, you may encounter a physician who takes a “wait and see” attitude toward late speech development. If you feel strongly that your child is not developing at the right pace, you do not have to wait and see if it picks up. Find a therapist on your own and get your child tested to see if therapy can help them. The sooner you get help with late speech development, the better your kids will do in school and in later life.
Just because a therapist comes recommended by your physician does not mean they will be the right match for you and your child. If you are not satisfied with the results you get from the physician recommended therapist, you can find one on your own. One of the best ways to find a good therapist is to ask someone you know who has a child working with one they like.
Some other ways to find speech therapists include looking in the phone book, calling a local college with education or speech therapy programs, and looking online for Australian speech professionals. You can also call the school system where your child will be enrolled when they reach school age. They can direct you to early childhood development programs, or even suggest working with their own therapists when appropriate.
When you find a therapist, make sure they specialise in working with children. Speech difficulties are not just a childhood problem, and some therapists do not work with patients at all. There are speech development professionals that work in a purely clinical environment to assess common problems, local tendencies toward speech problems and develop therapy plans, but do not actually work with the patients. Some therapists work with adults or the elderly, and others specialise in illness related speech problems.
Keep in mind that you are your child’s best teacher. Even when you have made arrangements for regular appointments with a professional, speech therapists can only do so much during any one visit. They will assign work for your child to do at home, and they will do much better if you are involved in helping them with their practice.
If you have questions about speech pathology or if you need to see a speech therapist in Sydney, contact your local doctor who will arrange for you to see a speech pathologist. For more information contact us.