May is Better Speech and Hearing Month, and as a speech language pathologist with Rainbows United, I am so excited to share my mantra with you:
Don’t worry, Call Rainbows!
This is what I say to parents who approach me and tell me they are worried about their child’s speech development. “Does this really happen to you all that often?” you may be asking yourself. My answer is YES, it does! I can’t count how many times I am introduced to someone and once they learn what I do for a living, they confide in me they are worried that their child isn’t talking. So often, at family gatherings, someone will approach me to ask what typical speech development looks like and fear that their child isn’t meeting these milestones. It’s not uncommon to get a call from a friend asking if they should be worried about their child or grandchild’s speech development. My advice to them: “Don’t worry, call Rainbows!”
Being a parent is stressful enough without the additional weight of worrying about whether your child is meeting speech milestones. Rainbows will come to your home or to your child’s daycare and conduct a free evaluation to determine if your child qualifies for and needs services. If your child does not qualify for services, that is ok. Rainbows is happy to put your mind at ease. If your child qualifies for our services, we will come to your home or child’s daycare and provide them for free!
I work with families who have children:
-With poor receptive language skills (difficulty understanding what is said to them)
-Who have great receptive language skills, but struggle with expressive vocabulary (words they will say)
-Who have feeding issues such as difficulties with breastfeeding, issues with feeding and swallowing and those who are very picky eaters
-Who show lots of frustration because they are unable to express their wants and needs, whether that be verbally or non-verbally.
At Rainbows, we use the coaching method. That means a Primary Service Provider will come to your home. They will interact with your child during their daily routine through play/activities and show you strategies that you can use to address their specific speech and language need. You can then apply these strategies in between visits to maximize your child’s progress. Our goal is to make parents feel confident and empowered! I also have access to a whole team of professionals from other disciplines, including occupational therapy, physical therapy and early childhood education. This allows us to address any other concerns you may have with your child’s development.
It’s important for parents to refrain from comparing their child to other children. All children develop in their own way and at their own rate. There are many things concerned parents can do when they worry their child may not be developing speech and language as they should. Parents can consult resources such as ASHA (American Speech and Hearing Association) to make them aware of typical speech and language milestones.
Above all, parents: “Don’t worry, call Rainbows!”
By Cynthia Iseman, Speech Language Pathologist
If you have a concern about your child’s development, please call 316.945.7117 for Sedgwick County; 316.320.1342 for Butler County; or 316.295.7855 for Sumner County Infant/Toddler Services.