Strong communication skills are essential when navigating life and one’s daily routine. When these communication skills are damaged or underdeveloped, the simplest tasks can become the most cumbersome of chores. There are many reasons why someone might need speech therapy. They may be recovering from a specific injury, suffering from a particular illness, or have articulation issues. Speech therapy is a form of physical therapy that exercises skills in speech, language, voice, cognition, and swallowing skills.
For seniors, these aspects of speech are more vulnerable to decline, which in and of itself can lead to a whole host of other physical/psychological issues. Not being able to speak or communicate properly can affect memory, mood, emotional well-being, and quality of life. But this outcome is avoidable through professional speech therapy. For more information on senior speech therapy and assisted living services, call us at 903.329.6520.
What Is a Senior Speech Therapy Program?
A speech therapy program is a form of physical therapy that strengthens an individual’s ability to speak and communication skills. The ability to communicate effectively is not only critical in terms of building and sustaining social relationships, but it is also critical for communicating pain and discomfort and calling for help.
Speech therapy also improves the physical strength of the muscles utilized in speech. The decline of these muscles can lead to issues with swallowing and oral hygiene, which in turn can cause seniors to lose weight due to the discomfort caused by eating. Senior speech therapists are trained to help their patients improve in these areas of communication by identifying areas of weakness and employing exercises and activities to strengthen them. Speech therapy can be extremely beneficial to those who:
- Have difficulty communicating needs/requests
- Have difficulty swallowing
- Have difficulty writing/reading
- Suffer from memory loss
- Have had a stroke
- Have issues in comprehension
- Are diagnosed with aphasia/apraxia
These are a few of the many reasons why someone of advanced age might seek out speech therapy. Preserving and building communication skills in seniors has been shown to improve their quality of life and emotional well-being as they are better able to communicate their emotions and needs.
Senior Speech Therapy Services
Not being able to communicate effectively can lead to depression and social isolation and further the effects of pre-existing issues such as dementia and Alzheimer’s. Speech therapy services work with seniors to promote and improve their speaking, comprehension, cognitive ability, reading, and writing skills. Much of this work is done by exercising and strengthening the vocal cords. With age, an individual’s vocal cords lose their elasticity while, simultaneously, the muscles in the larynx begin to weaken. Exercises employed by speech therapists focus on strengthening these areas while improving communication quality. These exercises have also been shown to improve memory loss. When someone wants to improve or preserve the strength of a muscle, they exercise it. The same is true when it comes to brain functions associated with communication. In addition to working with seniors one-on-one, speech therapists often work with seniors’ close friends and family so that a patient’s progress isn’t limited solely to therapy sessions.
Learn More about Senior Speech Therapy at Westminster Place in Longview, Texas
Watching a loved one struggle with communication issues is a painful experience, especially when it comes to our elders. These issues affect not only seniors’ quality of life and emotional well-being but also the emotional well being their loved ones. The emotional strain from not knowing if a loved one can communicate pain and discomfort is a kind of stress that can’t be compared.
At Westminster Place, we understand the severity of this issue and have assembled our assisted living facility so that all residents may experience the benefits of speech therapy. Our staff and nurses are passionate, experienced, and dedicated to providing our residents with the best care possible. For more information on senior speech therapy or to schedule an appointment today, contact us at 903.329.6520 or via our online form.