In case your child has a language delay then you should consider consulting a speech therapist. This will help your child to develop necessary communication skills quickly. However, choosing the right speech pathologist and therapist can be a difficult task. It is quite difficult to differentiate one therapist from another. Take a look at the tips mentioned below to choose the ideal therapist for your kid.
1. Knowledge and Experience:
Speech pathologists and therapists are clinical specialists and nothing better proves their credentials than their accreditation from recognized agencies like CAA accreditation program and details regarding their experience which can be corroborated from their clinic. You can take from community organizations or from online support groups to get details and reviews about the specialist you plan to consult. They would refer you to others from your locality that has similar issues like yours, who could guide you about speech pathologists and therapists in your locality.
2. Comfort Level with the Child and the Parents:
The speech therapies are offered to children from infancy to about 5 years of age. If you are planning on choosing a particular therapist, you need to make sure that he/she knows how to deal with kids. Also, your child should feel comfortable around them. A good therapist will always include the parents in the therapy process. Thus, you should make sure that you are comfortable while talking about your children’s problem with him/her. You need to ensure that he/she makes you a part of the decision-making process.
3. Patience to Listen:
The speech pathologist or therapist should have the patience to listen to the children and their parent. If the therapist is not patient enough, he/she will not be able to interpret the problems of the child. Actively listening to the problems of the child will enable him/her to work out an effective plan to overcome the roadblocks and keep up with his clinical and growth milestones.
4. Flexibility and Compassion:
Apart from the clinical knowledge on a particular subject, the speech pathologist and therapist should have compassion for the patient. A child can feel frustrated with speech issues, particularly if they are unable to communicate properly. The pathologist needs to empathize with the limitations that your child has. The therapist should be flexible enough to adjust to the limitations of the child.
Mistakes to Avoid while Choosing a Speech Therapist
At times, people make the most common mistakes while choosing a speech therapist for their child. Take a look at the mistakes that you should avoid at all cost.
· Even though it is an urgent matter, you should avoid falling into the trap of taking a hasty decision. If you do so then you might lose sight of what is really important like the quality of therapy provided. You might not take a lot of time narrowing down the options that are available and select the one that will offer your child the best care. Prior to hiring a therapist, ask yourself whether you chose him/her based on capability or in accordance with convenience or time.
· It is important to derive the maximum benefit out of the therapy. For this, you need to have complete trust on the person who is providing the therapy. If you experience a clash then you might not be able to work with him/her.
· Price plays a significant role when it comes to choosing a therapist. Some speech pathologist and therapist may be very good, but they may charge exorbitant fees.
There are several things that you might not understand about speech therapy. Thus, make sure that you question the pathologist about the things that you do not understand and make sure you are in the loop about what is being done with your child, keep track of the progress of your child and the deviation from the plan or expectation.