How do I know if my child needs a speech therapist?

How do I know if my child needs a speech therapist?

BreastfeedingSpeech therapists are very important to assess, diagnose and treat breastfeeding difficulties . Mainly because, in the vast majority of cases, what interferes with breastfeeding is the suction pattern of the baby. That is, he has no motor / oral ability to suck the milk correctly. This incorrect sucking of the baby can cause cracks, engorgement, mastitis and low milk production. When sucking, the baby cannot hurt the mother’s breast. You cannot leave any milk in the breast either after breastfeeding. When this happens it is a sign that there is something wrong.

Evaluating suction goes far beyond analyzing just the “handle” . This assessment requires an understanding of the movement of the tongue. Therefore, the professional qualified to assess and treat this difficulty is the speech therapist. The tongue test , which is done to analyze whether the newborn has a stuck tongue, is also done by specialists in the field of speech therapy.

Dysphagia

Does your baby choke while breastfeeding? Or with saliva often? Do you have any milk or food residue in your mouth? Tired very fast, needs breathing effort to suck or feed, showing irritability and with noise and secretion? Drool enough? If you said yes to any of these questions, it may be that he has dysphagia! How can the speech therapist help in these cases?

The treatment consists of adjusting the sensitivity and the musculature of the little mouth of the little one so that the process occurs safely. This makes breastfeeding and feeding time healthy and pleasurable.

Reflux

When it happens that the little one suffers from a more severe reflux or develops some food allergy, this baby’s mouth may become disorganized. This can reflect on breastfeeding, food introduction and also in speech. In these cases, a speech therapist is needed to assess the musculature and reorganize the baby’s mouth so that he can perform all oral functions efficiently.

Food introduction

Have you ever heard of food refusal or food challenges? The introduction of food is a very important step in the development of the little ones. In this phase, the development and growth of the baby’s mouth is stimulated. In addition to being fundamental in the maturation of the stomach and intestine.

For the child to feed it depends on good motor and physical development and oral and sensory skills. As well as motivation, family context and emotions are also involved. Factors such as food allergies, gastroesophageal reflux and prematurity are some examples of factors that can also interfere with food introduction.

If your little one has difficulty eating or is not willing to try different types and groups of foods it is important to seek qualified help. You should not just insist and force the child to eat. This can be even more damaging. The treatment is multiprofessional, and the speech therapist will provide this little mouth with conditions to receive food without forcing or causing discomfort in the baby. In this way, eating takes place in a pleasant and healthy way.

Speak

The baby’s process of communicating with the world begins very early. Gradually, the child grows and acquires a new vocabulary. You use new words to describe what you see and then you start forming sentences. And so on.

At 4 and a half years old, the child should already be able to pronounce all the sounds of speech. The order of acquisition of phonemes occurs according to the degree of difficulty in articulating them. The most difficult ones are usually the last ones, because they depend on a more complex motor act. When the child happens to exchange sounds or even have a delay in speech , the role of the speech therapist is to identify what is happening. Then, understand where the difficulty came from and solve both the problem and the damage that delay / exchange caused.

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