Senior Wellness: Speech-language pathologyand its uses

Senior Wellness: Keeping your speech up

GRAND RAPIDS, MICH. - Speech therapy is something that can help seniors in more ways than just to improve their speaking skills. A speech-language pathologist can help older people with several other issues as well.

They can help seniors utilize expressive and receptive language, increase cognition, problem solving, and orientation. The therapy can also help seniors with swallowing disorders, and those who need a bit of help with their speech or articulation. 

If you or someone you love is having trouble expressing their wants or needs, or isn't able to think of common words, is confused about household tasks, or forgetting about appointments, a speech-lanugage pathologist could be beneficial. They can also help when someone begins developing a quieter, more mumbled voice, or if they seem to be having trouble chewing and swallowing. 

So, what can a person do to keep their language skills as sharp as possible, for as long as possible? 

  • Use it or lose it, much like physical abilities.
  • Be active and engaged in hobbies or enjoyable activities, (reading, playing cards, doing a crossword.)
  • Talk, or sing, or write letters.
  • Write down important information from a voice mail, or making a grocery list.

Usually, for seniors, the most common reasons to see a speech-language pathologist are:

  • Had a stroke or mini-stroke
  • Progressive diseases such as Parkinson's disease
  • Head trauma or brain injuries
  • Head and neck cancer
  • A dementia diagnosis
  • Been hospitalized for an illness or in rehab for a long time
  • Been prescribed strong pain meds after a procedure that makes them a little foggier.

For more information about speech-language pathology and Porter Hills, you can follow this link

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