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Brie Vassil talks about speech therapy Tuesday at SVRMC.

The Emporia-Greensville Rotary Club welcomed guest speaker Brie Vassil, a Speech Language Pathologist from Southern Virginia Regional Medical Center.

What comes to mind when you hear speech language pathologist or speech therapist?  Rotary members during Tuesday’s meeting learned speech therapist do more than just teach people how to talk. An SLP can help treat problems related to speech, hearing and swallowing. Speech therapy can improve communication skills in kids as well as adults.  

Speech therapist do handle speech issues but they also help with other kinds of problems with spoken and written language such as dyslexia and dyspraxia. An assessment is done to figure out what kind of language problem an individual may have. SLP’s may help kids and adults build skills by working with them one-on-one.

 SLP’s help with articulation-not speaking clearly or fluency issues, trouble with the flow of speech such as stuttering. Some individuals may have trouble with voice pitch, or oral feeding, difficulty with eating and swallowing. SLP’s can provide help through exercise and strategies for each individual with a particular challenge. Some strategies may include language intervention activities, articulation therapy, feeding and swallowing therapy.  Memory loss, problem solving and reasoning occurs after a stroke or traumatic brain injury. For those who aren’t able to talk at all there is an I-pad or similar   device that is available and personalized with the patients personal information as well as their medical history and family members information. An SLP will train and teach the individual on how to properly use the device.   

Speech therapy can help kids and adults learn to speak more clearly. This helps with them feeling more confident and less frustrated about speaking to others. Kids who may experience language issues can benefit socially, emotionally and academically from speech therapy. The Southern Virginia Regional Medical Center’s Rehabilitation Department is now offering free speech and language screening. 

For additional information about speech therapy or to schedule a free speech and language screening please contact Vassil’s office at (434) 348-4546 or email her at gabriella-vassil@chs.net