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What can I expect from first SALT session?

(9 Posts)
passmethewineplease Mon 27-Jul-15 09:44:11

Just had a letter through to offer DS 20.5 months an appointment. Relatively soon on August the 10th. DS doesn't really have any words he doesn't really say mama or daddy or anything really just his own sort of language. He was referred to audiology and they said they thought he had mild hearing loss but not enough to stunt his vocabulary development. They want him back in October though I'm not sure why if it was just mild?

I was just wondering what I could expect from this first appointment with SALT really? Thanks in advance

SomedayMyPrinceWillCome Mon 27-Jul-15 11:17:48

When we went for put first / assessment SALT session, DS was 2. It was in a small ish room set out with different toys - a kitchen set up, soft toys etc. He was allowed to play freely while the SALT chatted with me & DH about our concerns regarding his speech. Then there was "structured play" with the therapist while she listen to DS talking to me & focused on how I interacted with him.
She then recommended a session of 6 weeks of once a week session.
It was very relaxed & DS had a great time
Hope this helps, let me know if you have more questions

gourd Tue 28-Jul-15 12:11:14

The SALT will want to to hear your concerns and will make an assessment based on those plus what your child is doing and saying. They will try to decide firstly, whether the child can understand what is said, then whether they can say any sounds or words (whatever those are - whether they are real words or their own versions), they will do a rough count of the number of "words" the child is using as a starting point. They may also look at sound production (are the speech sounded accurate even if they are not all used in words, are they saying enough speech sounds to start to work on words that use those sounds). The SALT may look at some ways of helping the child with articulation/sound production if the child is not able to produce certain basic speech sounds (the first speech sounds you'd expect to hear such as B and D). If the starting sounds are there but not being used to make words then they will go straight on to putting that initial consonant with a long vowel sound to make the start of a word (Baaa, Beee, Booo etc), then onto real words, then then phrases, then full sentences, as the child gradually progresses. Your child may not need as much help as this and may be able to miss some steps out, and the exact method may vary - it all depends on what the starting point is and how they progress and they all children are different. The goal is to enable your child to express themselves; to express needs/wants initially, and then to go on to social speech which will enable them to communicate fully with others. Best of luck!

Lottapianos Tue 28-Jul-15 12:17:54

Hi OP, I'm an Early Years SLT. As other posters said, the SLT will want to know about your concerns and will ask you questions about his developmental history. At your DS's age, assessment will be pretty much all through informal stuff - pretend play, maybe simple fishing or posting games using pictures, bubbles, maybe a bit of singing. The SLT will fully expect your DS to be shy and a bit clingy with you and he will not be forced to join in anything he doesn't want to.

The SLT will look at all areas of communication (attention, listening, play skills, interaction, social skills, understanding of language, use of words and non verbal communication skills) and discuss with you where he's doing ok, and possibly where he needs support. They will give you advice about strategies to use at home with him - this will be simple stuff you can include in your daily routine. They will decide what to do next if he needs further support - they may want to see him again in a few months, or put him on the waiting list for a block of therapy sessions. Provision is different in every part of the country and according to funding!

On the day of the appointment, tell him that you're going to play - use the name of the SLT if you know it. Avoid putting any pressure on him to talk or say hello or anything like that, just treat it as a fun thing. Good luck and let me know if you have any more questions

passmethewineplease Tue 28-Jul-15 13:34:55

Thanks guys that's really helpful. I'm a bit worried as I feel he doesn't understand a lot at all. For instance if I said we're going to play he wouldn't really know what I was on about. Should he?

Also if his hearing loss is mild is there any reason they want to see him back? Could it get worse? Thanks again it's helpful to know what to expect before hand!

Lottapianos Tue 28-Jul-15 14:14:45

His hearing loss could get worse, it could also get better. Its normal to monitor a child's hearing over a period of time if there are concerns.

Re his understanding, the SLT will be able to tell you exactly what level his understanding is at compared with what would be expected of an average child of his age. Would he understand simple instructions like 'go get your shoes', if his shoes were in another room, so you couldn't point to them?

passmethewineplease Tue 28-Jul-15 14:27:26

Thanks lotta. No he wouldn't, he doesn't really interact with me, he can do sometimes but it's quite short lived. He also doesn't walk yet so gets around on his knees or crawling. It takes a lot to actually grab his attention.

Lottapianos Tue 28-Jul-15 14:35:11

Definitely a good idea for him to see a SLT, and great that you've not had to wait too long for an appointment. The earlier that services can get involved with a child who needs extra support, the better, so great that he's being referred so young. Hope it is a positive experience for you

passmethewineplease Tue 28-Jul-15 14:50:53

Thank you, everyone who I've seen have been fab and not a long wait at all, we have an appointment with a paediatrician on Thursday too so all moving quite fast which I wasn't expecting!

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