Quality retirement communities offer a variety of senior care services to support your well-being. For some older adults, a must-have service is speech therapy. That’s true because, as you age, you have increased risks of problems speaking and using words properly. You may also experience swallowing difficulties. Speech therapy helps you overcome these kinds of problems. As a result, it can aid you in your goal of staying healthy and as independent as possible.
At Parkway Place, we understand the importance of senior speech therapy services. That’s why we include these services in our extensive slate of onsite programs. We’re standing by to help you thrive in your retirement years.
What Is Senior Speech Therapy?
As you grow older, your body naturally undergoes a variety of physical changes. Some of these changes occur inside your vocal cords, which can become less pliable and elastic. In addition, the muscles of your larynx can begin to weaken. In turn, problems in these areas can make it harder for you to talk or swallow.
You may also experience health issues that have an impact on your ability to swallow, speak or use language effectively. Potential examples of these issues include strokes and dementia. A stroke can trigger a language disorder called aphasia, which damages your ability to communicate. Dementia can make it harder for you to do such things as:
- Match a word to a particular object
- Use related or substitute words
- Remember words or use them in the proper order
Other potential problems include dysarthria and dysphagia. Dysarthria is a condition that weakens the muscles you use for speech. Dysphagia interferes with your ability to swallow without difficulty.
Speech therapy for seniors is designed to address the speech, communication, and swallowing issues that affect older adults. Therapy sessions are led by professionals specifically trained to fulfill this role. They aim to help you regain or maintain function and maximize your capacity to speak, communicate and swallow.
Who Needs Speech Therapy?
How can you tell if you or your loved one need speech therapy services? As a rule, the need for therapy is first determined by a doctor. If you receive a doctor’s referral, you will then meet with a speech therapist.
This therapist will conduct a comprehensive initial assessment. The goal of that assessment is twofold. First, it helps identify the exact issues affecting you. In addition, it gives your therapist the information needed to create a suitable action plan.
What Happens in Sessions of Speech Therapy for Seniors?
All senior speech therapy plans are customized. That’s true, in part, because so many factors can affect your need for treatment. This means there is no single example of what happens in a given therapy session. Depending on your situation, forms of treatment that may work for you include:
- Exercises that improve your ability to move your tongue
- Concentration exercises
- Communication exercises
- Coordination exercises for your swallowing muscles
- Word games and word memory exercises
- Postural adjustments for improved swallowing
Your therapist will guide you through each exercise or activity in your plan. As therapy progresses, those activities may be modified or changed.
Seek Help From Parkway Place’s Senior Speech Therapy Program
Do you or your senior loved one have issues that may call for the use of speech therapy? The professionals at Parkway Place are here for you. We offer a range of therapy options for both age- and health-related speech, communication, and swallowing issues. No matter how you’re affected, our customized treatment plans can help. For more information, call us today at 281.305.1846 or fill out our convenient online message form.