474 Tarant Road, Gardendale, AL 35071   Ph: (205) 608-2999     Fax:  (205) 423-5005  Email: info@trinityspeech.com    
Frequently Asked Questions How can I tell the difference between a developmental speech issue and something more serious? Most parents cannot tell the difference on their own. There is good information out there to help parents, but most parents start with their pediatrician. Pediatricians will offer their professional opinion, and provide appropriate materials.  The best way to determine whether a problem exists is to have an evaluation with standardized testing. A professional speech-pathologist can administer these protocols and provide parents with knowledgeable insights. What’s the difference between a speech and language impairment? This can be complicated to explain briefly, because there is overlap between the two. Generally, a speech impairment involves difficulty learning or producing the sounds in words. Family histories, ear infections, and functional muscular issues are a few of the common causes.  Language issues are usually more involved. Children can present comprehension difficulties related to vocabulary, sentence structure, or sequenced information. On the other hand, some children exhibit difficulties putting their thoughts into words and well constructed sentences. Many times both areas are affected. How do I know a speech-language pathologist is the right professional to help my child? Speech-language pathologists [SLP] can address a wide array of areas. The American Speech, Hearing Association [ASHA] posts the scope of practice on their website. Generally, an SLP can address any difficulty related to language and communication skills. Receptive and expressive language challenges impact a child’s capacity to perform well academically. Therefore, an SLP can help many children with learning problems. Given the training an SLP receives in language comprehension and the sound system, addressing reading issues is very common. Many speech-language pathologists specialize in reading remediation. In fact, specialization is common in the profession. Areas like autism, hearing impairments, and feeding difficulties are just a few areas an SLP may choose to focus on. How long will my child need treatment? Given the variety of conditions an SLP may treat, the amount of time in treatment varies considerably. In a clinical setting, the child receives one-on-one intervention. This approach is preferable and produces the best result. Still, consistency and practice are necessary for children to succeed, therefore keeping a regular schedule is important.  Most children who are treated in a clinical setting present conditions which are moderate-to-severe. Although progress may occur incrementally, the severity of the condition dictates the length of treatment. Phonological speech issues often improve considerably in thirty sessions. Oral-motor speech problems show similar progress, but usually take somewhat longer. Language issues are unpredictable, but reasonable progress can be noted in a several months [e.g., 30 - 40 sessions]. Although children with language impairments may show significant gains, a new set of challenges often awaits them at the next stage of development. Therefore, family members must be diligent to monitor their child’s progress in school, and provide assistance as needed. Children with dyslexia present many unique challenges, and can achieve a great deal of success through multi- sensory intervention. Skills are addressed through an explicit and systematic approach to insure success. Therefore, treatment can be lengthy [e.g., one year or more], but families are often thrilled with the results. Will my health insurance plan cover the cost of treatment? There is a lot of variety among health insurance plans. However, most plans include coverage for therapy services. In most cases, the patient is responsible for an annual deductible [e.g., $200 - $500]. The patient must pay this amount before the provider will pay for any of the services. Testing is not usually paid in full. This includes the amount applied to the deductible. Trinity conducts clinical testing which includes meetings and a comprehensive report. Most providers do not recognize this type of assessment, and will only pay based on traditional testing done at a patient’s bedside. Nevertheless, providers will typically pay for 80- 90% of treatment sessions. The patient is responsible for any applicable copays.
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Trinity Speech Language and Learning Center 474 Tarrant Road Gardendale, AL 35071 Phone: 205-608-2999 Fax: 205-423-5005 Email: info@trinityspeech.com