Brecksville speech therapy

How Our Brecksville Speech Therapy Helps Children With Autism

When your child is diagnosed with autism, Brecksville speech therapy can make a huge difference in their ability to communicate, understand what’s being communicated with them and more fully participate in the world around them.

Speech-language pathologists are professionals who specialize in treating both speech disorders and language problems. They play an integral role in autism treatment, assisting with early detection (some are even trained to conduct the ADOS test) and teaching children the speech, language and social skills they’ll need to succeed. We can even help in the referral process for other specialists.

Speech therapy for children with autism can last several years or longer. Over the course of treatment, our therapists work closely with the family and sometimes the school and other professionals. (One benefit of choosing Therapy & Wellness Connection is that we also provide occupational therapy and ABA therapy, which are often also recommended for children on the autism spectrum. We also provide numerous educational programs, including tutoring and homeschooling, and social emotional learning groups.)

If the child is nonverbal or has significant difficulties with speech, we offer temporary or long-term alternatives to speech that can include:

  • Signing or typing.
  • Picture boards.
  • Music, rhymes or song singing.
  • Electronic “talkers.”

We can also help improve one’s articulation by exercising the facial muscles and/or lips with fun games and activities. Certain techniques may work better than others, depending on the individual.

Individual goals will be customized to the child, but the overarching objective is communication that will allow kids with autism to form relationships and function in daily life.

Some examples of specific goals we may set for children on the spectrum include:

  • Articulation of words.
  • Verbal and non-verbal communication.
  • Comprehension of verbal and non-verbal communications (understanding the intentions of others in a broad array of situations).
  • Initiation of communication without prompting.
  • Understanding the appropriate time and place for communication.
  • Conversational skills.
  • Exchange of ideas.
  • Playing/interacting with peers.
  • Conveying needs and wants.
  • Learning to self-regulate.

As for when kids should start speech therapy, the general consensus is that the sooner we start, the better. Research shows that speech and communication delays can be recognized as early as 12-18 months. Sometimes autism is recognizable even before that. It’s critical to begin speech therapy as soon as possible. This is referred to as “early intervention.” This is when we know speech therapy has the most impact because the neural pathways are not yet solidified in younger children. Individualized, intensive treatment helps to lessen the disabling isolation that can stem from the type of social communication disability that many kids with autism grapple with.

Autism is an increasingly prevalent condition, and one that we are still learning about and understanding. What we do know is that early intervention that includes speech therapy can make a huge difference. Our dedicated, compassionate, creative team of speech therapists will work with your child to help them reach their maximum potential.

Therapy & Wellness Connection – your connection to a life without limitations – provides speech therapy to children in Brecksville-Broadview Heights, Akron, Cleveland and surrounding communities. We also offer summer camp, day programs, homeschooling, alternative schooling, virtual therapy and education, vocational counseling and more. Call us at (330) 748-4807 or send us an email.

Additional Resources:

Benefits of Speech Therapy for Autism, June 2, 2020, Medically Reviewed by Dan Brennan, MD, WebMD

More Blog Entries:

Brecksville ABA Therapist Insight: Autism and Self-Injurious Behavior, June 21, 2021, Brecksville Speech Therapy for Autism Blog