The Topical Monologue: How to help a child on the spectrum navigate conversational dynamics

If you have or work with a child on the autistic spectrum, you’ve probably had the following dilemma: Your child starts talking about a topic they’re interested in, let’s say airplanes. The conversation may start with one or two interesting facts about airplanes, but pretty soon, it transitions into a monologue without any end in sight. Here is where the dilemma comes in: Do you intervene, and let the child know that not everyone is as interested in planes as they are? Or do you encourage the child to continue by asking questions and encouraging engagement? Continue reading

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4 Ways an SLP Can Help a Child with Feeding and Swallowing Issues

Whether it’s a child that won’t sit at the table long enough to finish a meal or a phase where the only acceptable foods are chicken nuggets and ketchup sandwiches, most parents have struggled with getting their kid to eat at some point in time. However, for some children, eating can be a much more complicated issue. There are a range of reasons a child might have feeding or swallowing issues: problems with the muscles needed for chewing and swallowing, sensory issues that make certain textures or flavors intolerable, structural problems with the digestive tract. Regardless of the cause, a speech-language pathologist can be a valuable member of the team in making sure a child with feeding or swallowing disorders gets the nutrition they need. Continue reading

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What Do Thanksgiving and a Hoarse Voice Have in Common?

When people find they have a hoarse, weak, or raspy voice, they usually assume they’re coming down with a cold or blame it on some recent vocal abuse (e.g., cheering at a sports game, or screaming over a loud concert). Although these are definitely common reasons for poor vocal quality, there is another possible culprit that most people fail to consider: acid reflux. Continue reading

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Happy Thanksgiving! 3 Tips for Children on the Autistic Spectrum

Thanksgiving is right around the corner! Big family gatherings can be fun, but they can also be a source of stress. This is even more true for children on the autistic spectrum and their families. Large groups of people, changes to routine, and overstimulation can all cause discomfort and anxiety for a kid on the spectrum. Take a look at the following tips to make sure both you and your child have the most fun, least stressful holiday possible:  Continue reading

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Can TV and Technology Hurt Your Child’s Language Development?

Is your child's speech and language normal?As technological advances come at a breakneck speed, people are spending more time with technological devices than ever before. Whether it’s the television, your smartphone, or a tablet, odds are you spend a significant portion of your day looking at a screen. We’ve all seen the impact this can have on our interpersonal communication—who hasn’t been around someone who constantly checks their phone during a social gathering or professional event? People often think of being disconnected and distracted by technology as an adult problem. However this can be even more detrimental to little technology users. Continue reading

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Story Time Can Improve Your Child’s Language!

What is Dyslexia?For many parents, snuggling up with their child and reading a book is a favorite bonding experience. But studies have shown that reading to your child may be much more important than most people realize. Continue reading

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Communication Tips for Stuttering Awareness Day

isad_ribbonDid you know that an estimated three million people in the United States speak with a stutter? Each year on October 22, organizations across the country recognize Stuttering Awareness Day to help increase awareness of this disorder. In support of this campaign, today’s blog will provide some communication tips for people who stutter and their loved ones. Continue reading

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