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Treating speech, language, cognitive and swallowing disorders

The ability to communicate and understand others is vital to independence. Speech Language Pathologists are trained in the techniques designed to improve speech, language, and cognitive disorders. While many of our patients are children with developmental disorders, we also treat many adults who have suffered from a stroke, head injury, or other diseases.

Speech Language Pathologists also work with individuals with dysphagia or difficulty swallowing, such as an infant with difficulty tolerating feedings to an adult with difficulty swallowing after a stroke.

We work closely with Pediatric Therapy, Adult Therapy, Registered Dietitians and Audiology to provide multi-disciplinary services. We also offer a Pediatric Feeding Team.

How we can help you

Our certified speech and language pathologists will build a customized treatment plan based on the latest medical evidence available. We'll help you set goals for success and continually update your treatment plan as you improve your skills. More specifically:

  • We can help you learn how to say speech sounds correctly.
  • We can help develop proper control of the vocal and respiratory systems if you have a voice disorder.
  • We assist individuals who stutter to increase their fluency.
  • We help children with language disorders improve grammar, vocabulary and conversation skills.
  • We assist individuals with aphasia to improve comprehension of speech and reading and production of spoken and written language.
  • We help family members better understand disorders so they can provide the proper support for the patient to continue improving.
  • We help patients with difficulty with problem solving and memory following a head injury, stoke, or other neurological diagnosis.
  • We evaluate the ability to swallow safely with video swallow studies.
  • We make recommendations to help children and adults with swallowing difficulty receive nutrition safely.

Did you know?

The majority of speech disorders in children have no known cause.

When you visit

During your initial visit you should expect questions about your medical history and then a more formal evaluation of your skills. After the evaluation, therapy recommendations will be made.

Our Speech Language Pathologists will develop an individualized plan of care, tailored to your needs. We also provide education to family members and caregivers regarding impairments, disease processes, and compensatory strategies.

Is my child’s speech and language developing normally?

If your child demonstrates the following, he/she could benefit from an evaluation by a Speech Language Pathologist:

  • Does not laugh and squeal by
    six months
  • Limited or no babbling by
    nine months
  • Has not used first word by
    15 months
  • Does not follow simple commands by 20 months
  • Vocabulary less than 50 words by 24 months
  • Is not understood by strangers by 36 months
  • Does not use simple sentences by 36 months
  • Uses repetitive behaviors
  • Has difficulty with transitions
  • Stutters more consistently and for longer than six months
Guidelines taken from Janet Lanza and Lynn Flahive’s publication for LinguiSystems: LinguiSystems Guide to Communication Milestones, 2009 edition. For additional information:

Signs of a swallowing difficulty

If you or your loved one demonstrates any of the following signs of a swallowing difficulty, he/she could benefit from an evaluation by a Speech Language Pathologist:

  • Coughing/choking during eating or drinking 
  • Pain during swallowing
  • Unintentional weight loss
  • Recurrent pneumonias and/or recurrent respiratory infections
  • Feeling like food or drink gets “stuck” in your throat or chest
  • Coughing/choking during meals/feedings
  • Avoidance of certain textures
  • Difficulty gaining weight or unintentional weight loss
  • Difficulty breast or bottle feeding
  • Recurrent pneumonias and/or recurrent respiratory infections
  • Difficulty breathing during meals/feedings
  • Color change, arched back, raised eyebrows or stretched hands during feeding

Franciscan St. Elizabeth Health - Lafayette Central

Speech Pathology
1116 N. 16th Street
Lafayette, IN 47904
PH: (765) 423-6336
FX: (765) 423-6184
Hours: M-F 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.

Certified therapists

Our staff is licensed by the State of Indiana Health Professions Bureau and holds the American Speech-Language Hearing Association Certificate of Clinical Competence.

Additionally, our staff is certified in the Beckman Oral Motor Protocol, which provides assisted movement to activate muscle contraction and prevent resistance to building strength for the lips cheeks, jaw, tongue and soft palate.