Speech and Language Pathologists are healthcare professionals who provide diagnoses, consultation and clinical supports to people of all ages who experience communication or swallowing disorders. Their role is to:

  • Evaluate and treat individuals who are having difficulty communicating daily wants and needs. These communication difficulties effect populations as diverse as autistic preschoolers, individuals with developmental disabilities, and geriatric stroke patients.
  • Evaluate and treat individuals who are having difficulty swallowing. This difficulty can occur in patients with diagnoses such as stroke, Parkinson’s disease, Multiple Sclerosis, or in individuals with developmental disabilities.
  • Make recommendations to caregiving staff and families to improve communication and to promote safe and efficient swallowing.

A Speech and Language Pathologist would be consulted when a child or adult is experiencing:

  • Difficulty understanding what is said
  • Difficulty with speech intelligibility, or with using speech to makes needs known
  • The need for an alternative or augmentative communication system
  • A decrease in reading or writing ability
  • Swallowing difficulties such as coughing or choking with liquids or solid foods, a significant weight loss, or aspiration pneumonia