Voice, Speech, Cognition, and Swallowing
- Voice: Evaluate and treat impairments of the voice such as low volume, breathy or strained voice. Speech therapy will utilize exercises and strategies to improve volume and vocal quality to improve how well one can be understood.
- Speech/Articulation: Evaluate and treat disorders of speech and articulation such as slurred, mumbled, or garbled speech, also known as dysarthria. Speech therapy will work to improve speech intelligibility (how well one is understood in conversation) through use of exercises and strategies.
- Cognition: Evaluate and treat impairments of thinking, reasoning, safety, memory, judgment, word finding, processing speeds, and attention. SLPs will work with you and your loved one to find strategies that will increase independence and safety.
- Swallowing: Evaluate and treat impairments of swallowing, such as coughing, feeling as food is stuck in the throat, or inability to chew specific foods. The medical terminology for a swallowing impairment is called dysphagia. SLPs will work to improve the safety of the swallow through use of strategies, adaptations, diet modifications, and exercises to decrease the risk of respiratory infections and to maximize nutrition and hydration
For more resources, please visit The American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) at www.asha.org or call your doctor for a referral to a speech-language pathologist.
Evidence Based Voice and Speech Treatment Techniques
- LSVT LOUD (Lee Silverman Voice Treatment): LSVT LOUD is an evidenced based voice and speech protocol that consists of 16, one-hour sessions over a one month period. Therapy is completed in a 1:1 setting with a professionally trained speech-language pathologist to improve voice and speech. LSVT LOUD targets vocal loudness which utilizes the principles of neuroplasticity (the brain’s ability to change). The goal of LSVT LOUD is to improve one’s ability to improve functional communication and generalize to all environments by calibrating (teaching the brain what is a normal loudness). Visit www.lsvtglobal.com to learn more about LSVT LOUD and to find a certified clinician near you.
- SPEAK-OUT!: SPEAK OUT! is an evidenced based speech therapy program that utilizes education, individualized therapy, and ongoing group therapy based on motor learning principles. SPEAK OUT! consists of 8-12 sessions lasting 40-45 minutes per session, emphasizing “speaking with intent” to improve functional speech. Upon completion of individual sessions, participants will join ongoing group sessions to maintain their improved voices. Visit https://www.parkinsonvoiceproject.org/ to learn more about SPEAK OUT! and to find a provider near you.