For Patients and Families
Early Intervention Key to Future Success
Communication skills are critical for a normal, productive life. Left untreated, a communication disorder can have a lifelong effect on social development, interpersonal relationships, the ability to learn, and the achievement of independence. Swallowing disorders can affect nutrition, health, and even relationships that develop within the context of social eating.
Young children develop the majority of their speech and language skills in the first three years of life. Early intervention is critically important because infants, toddlers, and preschoolers have developing brains that are designed to learn communication and swallowing skills. If there is a problem with that development, therapy should be started as soon as possible to take advantage of this critical period of brain development.
Early intervention for a communication or feeding / swallowing disorder greatly improves the child’s ultimate outcome. Speech-language pathologists are able to determine what problems a child will “grow out of” with normal development and what problems will require therapy for correction.