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What to expect during your first speech therapy session?

Updated: Oct 3, 2022

Expectations when attending a session for Speech Pathology in Adelaide


Attending your first speech therapy could be a daunting experience for your child. This is why it is extremely vital for you to prepare your child and yourself for their first meeting with their speech therapist. The first meeting with your speech therapist typically begins with an assessment.


Assessments by our Speech Pathologists in Adelaide


Assessments can take various forms including but not limited to interviews, conversations and standardised tests such as the CELF-5 (Clinical Evaluation of Language Fundamentals) which is one of the most commonly used assessment tool.


Other assessment techniques can include the following:

- Observing your child's behaviour when interacting with others (parents, peers)

- Questionnaires filled out by parents/teachers/carers

- Gathering information and working together with other professionals involved in your child's development e.g. Occupational Therapists, Psychologists, doctors.


Your paediatric speech therapist will collate all the information obtained through the various sources above to determine if your child has a speech or language disorder. This information gathering process will serve as a base to form an understanding of your child's strengths and weaknesses. The goal is to develop and implement a targeted speech therapy treatment plan for your child which would best assist him/her fulfil their potential in life.



Initial consultation/session with our Speech Therapists in Adelaide


For the initial speech therapy session, our paediatric speech therapists will aim to provide a comfortable environment for your child to feel confident and be able to express themselves naturally. This could involve interactions through play (depending on your child's age). Building a strong relationship with your child is our upmost priority as this would be vital towards a strong working relationship going forward.

Our goal is to build trust with the child to ensure that they will feel comfortable interacting and playing with our speech therapists.

After the first appointment/assessment, our speech therapist will write a full report of the assessment results. This will provide parents or carers an insight into the child's speech and language abilities and whether there is a requirement for ongoing speech and language therapy. This report could also be shared with all relevant parties (e.g. occupational therapists, doctor, teachers) involved in the child's development.

This is also a chance for you to get to know your speech therapist, determine if he/she is a good fit for your child. In addition, you will be able to discuss expectations, key milestones and services which your speech therapist would be able to provide going forward. This will allow you to gain an understanding of our approach and how speech therapy can assist your child in his life.


Ongoing speech and language support for Speech Therapy in Adelaide


Your speech therapist will communicate with you as to whether your child needs ongoing speech therapy support. The frequency of the ongoing support depends primarily on the level of support your child requires. Kids with a moderate or low speech and language disorder might be suitable for fortnightly sessions with their speech therapists. Kids with more severe speech and language disorders will require ongoing weekly support. This will be a discussion between you and your speech therapist to work out the best possible approach for your kid.

There are also other factors to consider in the process such as speech therapist's availability, logistics for attending speech therapy regularly, funding etc.







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