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Being able to communicate is rather important to individuals of all ages. If we talking about older adults, it’s also the matter of self-confidence, independence and safety. When a senior patient suffering from serious diseases isn’t able to communicate his pain and warn the caregivers about the upcoming attack, it gets quite difficult to prevent an emergency situation. At the same time, there are numerous factors that may influence their ability to speak and cause the need for the speech therapy.
For instance, there’s a number of illnesses that may cause speech impairments of different degrees among seniors. Natural aging processes affect the vocal cords of older adults making them less elastic. Larynx muscles weaken with the age as well. The combination of these factors may make it quite difficult or even impossible for older adults to talk.
When that happens, the speech therapy professionals step in and help the patients restore their communication abilities and maintain the dignity. Open Door Home Care understand how crucial the ability to speak is to senior and disabled patients and serves to connect them with the best speech therapists in all five New York boroughs and Nassau County.
The first thing our specialist do when meeting a new patient is evaluating their speech disorders and developing a custom treatment plan. The specialist’s goals are to improve client’s communication, cognition, and hydration, as well as make the food consumption process easier.
There are 5 main groups of older adults that may benefit from engaging in speech therapy:
It means that speech and language therapy activities may be recommended for elderly patients in the following situations:
1. When individuals need help with their weakened vocal cords
Our vocal cords and larynx muscles deteriorate as we age. Most older adults aren’t affected by this issue to the extent when they need professional assistance, while others definitely notice the increasing speaking difficulties. In that case, speech therapists may help seniors re-learn how to communicate in a normal fashion and strengthen the cords with the help of special vocal exercises.
2. When people have swallowing issues
Swallowing problems are much more common in seniors that we may think. However, speech therapy may totally fix or at least improve chewing and swallowing. As a result, the risk of choking will be reduced and senior patients will feel a significant relief.
3. If senior patients have dementia
Dementia is a term used to describe a number of symptoms related to the decline in memory and thinking skills. Alzheimer’s disease, thyroid issues and strokes are the most common roots of dementia. The reason why people who have it should consider undergoing speech therapy is that it will help them preserve the brain function that’s associated with communication, which will also allow to slow down the deterioration of memory, attention and thinking skills.
4. When people need to eliminate speech disorders caused by certain diseases
Brain injuries and strokes often cause language impairments. Some cases are more complicated than others. However, our speech therapists are quite successful at restoring speech function after a stroke or a brain injury.
The only thing is that the faster you address the issue and enlist the support of a professional speech therapist, the higher the chances for a full recovery will be.
So, if you notice that you or your loved one is having even minor difficulty speaking, contact Open Door Home Care to receive a consultation and schedule an appointment with a qualified specialist in the State of New York.