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What is it like in the daily life of a Speech Pathologist working with children?

I'm currently going to school for speech pathology and I would love to work with children. Just curious to know what their average day actually looks like.. #speech-pathology #speech

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Daniela’s Answer

Hi Victoria!


Pediatric speech-language pathology includes the evaluation and treatment of patients from birth to 18 years old. As such, it can require specialized skills in several differing age groups, including infants, toddlers, preschoolers, school-aged children and adolescents. Common disorders found in the pediatric population, particularly in a medical setting, include apraxia and other articulation or phonology disorders, autism, language disorders, central auditory processing disorders, and stuttering. Dysphagia is very common in a pediatric medical setting. The evaluation and treatment of children with dysphagia requires a special knowledge of the anatomy and physiology of babies and children and the usual causes of dysphagia in the pediatric population.


Because children with chronic or complex conditions have multiple medical and treatment needs, it is important for the pediatric speech-language pathologist to take an interdisciplinary approach to the care of pediatric patients.


Depending on the patient's diagnosis, functional skills, current needs, and age level, the pediatric speech-language pathologist may collaborate with any of the following professionals: physicians (particularly those noted above), nurses, social workers, dieticians, occupational therapists, physical therapists, recreation therapists, psychologists, teachers, audiologists, aural rehabilitation specialists, and others. SLPs may participate on specialized teams within the facility, such as a cleft palate or feeding team.


Speech-language pathologists often provide co-treatments with another discipline (usually occupational therapy or physical therapy) for patients with various neurological conditions. For patients who are undergoing inpatient (and often outpatient) pediatric rehabilitation, the interdisciplinary treatment team works together to develop an integrated team treatment plan.


Read more in:
http://www.asha.org/slp/healthcare/start_ped/


Good luck and all the best!

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Elena’s Answer

Hi Victoria,
That’s awesome that you are interested in Speech Pathology. Nation-wide SLPs are in dire need both privately (adult and pediatric) and publicly (schools). I have a masters in speech-language pathology. I work full-time in our School district and part-time (per diem) privately with a handful of home health companies. In the schools, my assignments are elementary, high school and Homebound (medically fragile). My students are working on articulation, language and social skills. I usually see students 1-2 times per week for 30 min sessions. I am considered special education and students must be evaluated and create an individualized plan. I work within a multidisciplinary team (parent, SLP, General education teacher and sometimes with the school psychologist and special education teacher. A student can be a “speech only” or a “related service.” Our schools house different programs like Autism, Vision Impaired, Life Skills and Resource Room. In the private sector I take adults who have had cerebral strokes and have difficulty with swallowing and/or speaking. Sometimes it’s just an evaluation and other times I see them 1-2 a week for a few weeks to educate and instruct on aspiration precautions, swallow strategies and food texture/liquid (viscosity) thickness or help them speak again with a variety of language/voice exercises. I have found both settings to be uniquely rewarding and I am fortunate to be needed in both. With a masters degree and certification from the American Speech-Language and Hearing Association you can obtain a state or Dept of Education license and work in any state in schools or privately (adults or pediatric clinics, homes, hospitals or rehabilitation. In my city there are SLPs who work only in schools, privately or both. I hope that I have answered some of your questions! Good luck, work hard and you will love helping others in speech or swallow! The cons…paperwork, mostly in schools.
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