The Department of Speech Therapy at Sengkang General Hospital is made up of a group of Speech Therapists specialising in Swallowing and Communication difficulties. They are supported by Therapy Assistants. Speech Therapists, also known as Speech-Language Pathologists, work in a multidisciplinary setting together with other Allied Health Professionals, Nurses and Doctors in the inpatient and outpatient setting, to provide holistic care for patients.
At SKH, the range of care offered by the therapist spans from assessment and diagnosis to management and rehabilitation across the following domains:
Language - where there are difficulties in understanding others and expressing oneself.
Speech - where difficulties are encountered in terms of producing speech sounds correctly or fluently. Difficulties pronouncing sounds, and inaccurate articulation are examples of speech disorders
Voice - where difficulties are found in the production of speech sounds, affecting the pitch, loudness, or quality of the voice.
Swallowing - where difficulties are experienced with chewing, eating or swallowing.
Fluency - where difficulties in the flow of speech occur in the form of repetitions, prolongations and stoppages.
Swallowing and Communication difficulties vary from person to person and can range from mild to severe.
If you know of someone or are currently experiencing difficulties in the above areas, kindly consult a Doctor to determine if a referral to a Speech Therapist is required.
Management of Dysphagia
Certain medical conditions, such as neurological impairment, respiratory disorders, and head and neck surgery may result in swallowing disorders, also known as dysphagia. This can lead to poor health and reduced quality of life. When referred, Speech Therapists will evaluate and provide management options to help these patients with dysphagia. If required, the Speech Therapists may also conduct Videofluoroscopic Swallowing Studies or Flexible Endoscopic Evaluation of Swallowing procedures for further assessments.
Speech and Language Therapy
After a neurological event, patients may experience difficulties with understanding spoken/written information, and/or finding the right words to say. They might also have slurred speech and trouble with sequencing speech sounds. Speech Therapists work with patients to maximize their understanding and/or use of language. Sometimes, a low tech Augmentative and Alternative Communication tool e.g. a communication chart may be used to bridge this communication gap whilst recovery is taking place.
Management of Voice Disorders
Professional and occupational voice users may acquire atypical voice changes that impact their ability to communicate in their daily lives. Speech Therapists provide consultation and voice therapy sessions tailored to individual needs. We also work closely with the laryngologist to ensure holistic management of patients' vocal function in a joint Voice Clinic.
Management of Stuttering
Stuttering is a disorder that affects the fluency of speech. It usually appears in early childhood from around the ages of two to five and can carry on into adulthood. The Speech Therapists work with adults who stutter by teaching speech exercises and techniques and helping clients learn a new speech pattern called 'smooth (or prolonged) speech'.
Speech Therapy for Dysarthria and Apraxia of Speech
Language Therapy for Aphasia and Cognitive-Communication Difficulties
The department also works with patients with tracheostomy for post-tracheotomy voicing, to enable the patient to speak, usually with the aid of a speaking valve.
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