Swallow & Speech Rehabilitation: Type of Exercises & Therapies | Narayana Health
Speech And Swallow Rehabilitation

Speech And Swallow Rehabilitation

Our highly experienced team assesses and provides treatment for Speech, Language, Voice and Swallowing Disorders.

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Speech & Swallow Rehabilitation

Speech Pathology is a speciality which deals with the assessment and treatment of speech, language, voice and swallowing disorders. These are usually caused by brain damage/trauma/stroke, cancer, infection, birth anomalies or associated with surgical complications in paediatric, adult and geriatric population.

Both adults and children can be affected by speech disorders. Timely diagnosis and suitable treatment are the recommended ways to manage these conditions. These disorders can be a result of post-traumatic experiences, neurological or developmental conditions.

The causes may include;

  • Strokes
  • Neurological disorders
  • Vocal cord paralysis
  • Muscle weakness
  • Respiratory weakness
  • Nodules on the vocal cords
  • Dementia
  • Oral cancer
  • Autism
  • Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
  • Cleft Palate

Depending on the cause and severity of the condition, the treatment can vary. The two types of treatment options mainly include speech therapy exercises to familiarize with words and sounds. The second type is physical exercises for strengthening the vocal muscles.

Diagnosis of Speech Disorders: What to expect?

Speech therapists can recommend several tests based on the type and severity of the condition. Delayed treatment can slow the success rate of the recovery process. It is best to reach out for treatment at the earliest. Some of the procedures that the doctor can recommend include;

  • Denver Articulation Screening Exam

This test is mainly conducted on children between the age group of 2 to 7 to diagnose articulation disorders. DASE is a five-minute test that evaluates the clarity in pronunciation.

  • Early language milestones scale 2

This particular test is conducted to identify language disorders and any signs of delayed speech.

  • Peabody picture vocabulary test

This test was established in the year 1959 and has been revised several times since its inception. The test evaluates a person’s vocabulary and his/her ability to speak. The person is made to listen to words and choose pictures that best describe them.

The treatment and recovery period from speech disorders largely depends on the severity of the condition. Speech disorders can also lead to other experiences such as embarrassment, anxiety or depression. In such cases, speech therapies may have to be combined with talk therapies for better support.

Our services include a complete assessment of these disorders using the most technologically advanced instrumentation.

Scope of Services

Specialities include Oncology - Head and Neck Oncology, Neurosurgery, Paediatric Surgery, GI Surgery, Haematology, Medical and Radiation Oncology.

  • Trauma - Neuro, ENT, Paediatric and Maxillofacial
  • Developmental - Paediatric & ENT Degenerative Neurological Disorders
  • ICU - Cardiac, Neuro, Medical & Surgical, Paediatric and Neonatal
  • Syndromes - Genetics, Paediatrics & Cranio-Maxillo Facial

Services & Facilities, Diseases & Treatments

Speech therapy- Degenerative Disorders, Strokes, Stammering, Fast Speech, Mispronunciation & Unclear Speech

Voice therapy- Vocal Abuse, Misuse, Vocal Cord Pathologies, Cancer, Clefts. Video Laryngoscopy, Nasal Endoscopy and Video Fluoroscopy

Language therapy- Stroke, Delayed Speech, Autism, Syndromes, Cerebral Palsy, Hearing Loss (Cochlear Implant and Hearing Aids)

Swallow therapy- Laryngomalacia, Trauma, Strokes, Tumors in children, Cancer, Stenosis, Trauma, Stroke, Degenerative Disorders, Clefts, Syndromes. Fiberoptic Endoscopic Swallow Test, Videofluoroscopic Swallow Study Test

Areas of Special Interest

  • Alaryngeal Speech following Laryngectomy
  • Speech & Swallow Rehabilitation following Head and Neck Cancers
  • Voice Care - Professional voice users (Singers, actors, radio jockeys, teachers, salesman, clergy, politicians, police officers, IT professionals, bus conductors)

Speciality Clinic Details

  • Voice & Swallow Clinic - Every Wednesday
  • Stoma Clinic - Every Wednesday
  • Laryngectomy & Glossectomy Clinic – once a month

Medical Education & Research

  • Ongoing PhD projects & research publications on speech and swallow pathology
  • Internship training for Speech Pathology & Audiology students from various institutions

Unit Activities

  • Social initiatives- Free speech & hearing camps
  • Public Awareness Campaigns- World Voice day, Cancer Survivors day
  • Mass media Initiative - Television programmes on local and national television
  • Scientific presentations at various national and international forums

Speech And Swallow Rehabilitation FAQ's

What does speech and swallow rehabilitation involve?

Speech and swallow rehabilitation therapy is directed by a speech-language pathologist. Speech pathologists evaluate and treat issues concerning articulation, voice, stuttering, and swallowing disorders. They work closely mainly with neurologists, otorhinolaryngologists, rehabilitation specialists and paediatricians.

Why would you need speech and swallow rehabilitation?

Speech and swallowing problems can cause hindrance to your nutrition, consuming and enjoying food, muscles and even breathing. Therapists work closely with people who suffer from these disabilities to improve their ability to eat and function ordinarily. People who have also had a history of neurological conditions like stroke, traumatic brain injury, geriatric- related conditions may need speech and swallow rehabilitation.

How can I treat difficulty in swallowing?

Firstly, the pathologist will evaluate the patient to diagnose dysphagia. After the diagnosis, the speech-therapist may recommend diet alteration, postural modifications and swallowing exercises to strengthen the muscles. In some cases, these problems are easy to manage but vary depending on each person’s condition.

There are a few steps you can take to make eating and drinking easier such as:
  • Better positioning
  • Amount and rate of eating
  • Food consistency
  • Saliva management
  • Frequent swallowing

What causes weak swallowing muscles?

The reason for weak swallowing muscles could be due to oropharyngeal or oesophagal. Oropharyngeal dysphagia is a disorder that weakens the muscles and makes it difficult to swallow without gagging or choking. The causes for this disorder are neurological conditions like Parkinson’s, radiation therapy, stroke, or multiple sclerosis. It can also be caused by head and neck cancer. Oesophagal dysphagia is the feeling of something is trapped in your throat. This can be caused by swelling, narrowing, tightening or spasm in the oesophagus.

Why is speech therapy required?

At first, the speech-language pathologist assesses the person and tries to identify the type of communication ailment and finds the best therapy to provide aid. Speech disorders can occur in childhood or late in adulthood. Therapy can help treat several speeches and language-related disorders like articulation, fluency, resonance, receptive, cognitive-communication, aphasia and dysarthria. It can also include reskilling of swallowing function in individuals with injuries or medical conditions like oral cancer or stroke.

What are some popular speech therapy techniques?

Speech therapy techniques can differ in children and adults.

For Children:
  • They are encouraged to use books, pictures, and other objects to interact and to help stimulate language development.
  • The child and parents are taught strategies on how to do speech therapy at home
For Adults:
  • Activities that promote cognitive-communication.
  • Breathing exercises
  • Oral Muscle-strengthening exercises
  • Tactics to improve social communication