Consistency is Key: Why Regular Speech Therapy Attendance is So Critical to Your Child’s Success
When it comes to speech therapy attendance, consistency really is essential. This is true no matter what the child’s condition or severity level.
As our Cleveland speech therapists can explain, while no two children may have the exact same needs in terms of frequency, duration, intensity, or length of treatment – the one thing all kids need with speech therapy is consistency.
In fact, consistency is so important that it’s better for kids to attend fewer sessions with less frequency than to have more sessions with less consistency.
Among the ways that consistency in attendance at speech therapy can help children make better – faster – progress:
- Developing a routine. When kids know what they can expect each time, it can ease anxieties and frustrations. Less time is spent re-establishing trust or explaining the rules – creating an atmosphere that’s more fun, engaging, and more effective. Ultimately, that’s more energy that can be spent working on their goals.
- Build better relationships. Therapy can be hard work. Children really have to challenge themselves. Trust between a patient and therapist is so important – especially in 1:1 sessions. A child who consistently shows up is going to walk in with warmer feelings – and more ready to learn – when they feel safe and comfortable and happy with the person they’re spending time with. That kind of a relationship gets built over time – and consistency is really important to making it happen.
- More effective individualized support. Speech therapy sessions are tailored to the individual needs of the child, and regular attendance can help the therapist to monitor the child’s progress and adjust their therapy plan as needed. This personalized support can help the child to address their specific communication challenges and make steady progress.
- Practice and feedback. Speech therapy involves a lot of practice and feedback, and regular attendance allows the child to receive consistent opportunities to practice their communication skills and to receive feedback from the therapist. This can help the child to develop their skills more quickly and to address any issues or challenges that arise along the way.
- Reinforcement. Regular attendance at speech therapy can also help to reinforce the child’s progress and to encourage them to continue working on their communication skills outside of therapy. The therapist can provide positive reinforcement for the child’s achievements and help them to set goals for future progress, which can motivate the child to continue making progress over time.
- Faster generalized skills. When children regularly attend speech therapy, they’re going to be thinking about their goals more regularly and in daily life. That’s going to offer more opportunities to practice, self-correct, and reflect.
Overall, regular attendance at speech therapy can provide children with the ongoing support, personalized attention, and opportunities for practice and feedback that they need to make steady progress in their communication skills.
For all these reasons, most private pediatric speech therapy clinics in Northeast Ohio have some sort of attendance policy. We understand in life things happen, so there’s some flexibility, but regularly attendance of scheduled appointments is very important. It’s true that part of this is to protect the financial interests of the therapists and the clinic because they can’t bill insurance if you don’t show up – and that’s time that could be spent working with another child who needs help. (And most all clinics in this region have patient waiting lists.) But beyond that, it’s because consistency is so important to the success of each child, so we make it a top priority.
This is why when you’re first starting off with therapy, we encourage parents to take a close look at their schedule and their insurance to determine what is going to work best for their family so that maintaining regular attendance won’t become an issue.
Therapy & Wellness Connection – your connection to a life without limitations – provides speech therapy to children in Akron, Cleveland, Brecksville-Broadview Heights and surrounding communities. We also offer summer camp, day programs, education services, vocational counseling and more. Call us at (330) 748-4807 or send us an email.
Speech and Language Developmental Milestones, National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders
More Blog Entries:
Speech Delays Higher Among Ohio Kids Whose Early Years Were During Pandemic, Jan. 10, 2023, Brecksville Speech Therapists Blog