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National Speech-Language-Hearing Month

Each May, National Speech-Language-Hearing Month provides an opportunity to raise awareness about communication disorders and the role of speech-language pathologists and audiologists in providing life-altering treatment.

Better Hearing & Speech Month: Text
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What does a speech-language pathologist do?

  • Speech—People with speech problems may not say sounds clearly or smoothly. This may make it difficult for others to understand them.

  • Language—A person with a language disorder may have problems with expressing themselves, understanding others, and reading and/or writing.

  • Cognition—This can involve difficulties with attention, memory, problem-solving abilities, organizational skills, and judgment.

  • Voice—Hoarseness, breathiness, pain, frequent coughing, and other problems with a person’s voice may result from medical problems or from overuse or misuse (certain professions—like teachers, musicians, and coaches—are at greater risk).

  • Augmentative and Alternative Communication—People may need or choose to use other ways to communicate besides talking. These include no- or low-tech and high-tech options such as pointing or gesturing, using picture boards, and using speech-generating devices.

  • Feeding and Swallowing—Difficulties may include coughing or gagging during meals, food or liquid leaking from the mouth, or food getting stuck in the mouth or throat. These difficulties may occur due to preterm birth, developmental disabilities, medical conditions, and illness and injury.

  • Gender-Affirming Voice and Communication—This area may focus on pitch, tone, vocal health, nonverbal communication, and more.

  • Communication Coaching—Some SLPs help with public speaking and communication style, which may include learning another accent.

Better Hearing & Speech Month: About
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What is the role of the school-based speech-language pathologist?

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Better Hearing & Speech Month: Image
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Statistics show that over 50% of teachers experience a voice disorder at some point during their career, and at least 20% of those teachers have missed at least one or more days of work because of it.

Better Hearing & Speech Month: Image
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