Oral placement for speech and feeding safety is designed to be used with clients with oral-motor deficits related to poor muscle control with a diagnosis of dysarthria. In addition, it is to be used with children with reduced coordination and agility of the oral structures such as dyspraxia.
In these populations, low muscle tone, reduced oral coordination and precision for speech-production is common. Oral placement therapy uses oral activities, tactile cues and feeding techniques to increase oral awareness, teach correct placement for phoneme production, as well as, improve agility of the oral structure.
Oral placement therapy addresses the motor component of speech production by targeting movements of the jaw, lips, and tongue. Speech in a client with oral motor deficits is often characterized by mispronunciations of multiple phonemes, distortions and deletions of various consonants and vowels. These clients can benefit from oral placement programs in addition to traditional speech sound therapies. Because these techniques are motivating and designed to promote success, children enjoy working with parents/caregivers and therapists. Each therapy task is divided into manageable, task-analyzed steps to ensure success.
Normal muscle movement is necessary for standard speech clarity to develop appropriately. Clients with oral -motor disorders may not have adequate muscle strength or endurance to support the development of intelligible speech. If oral motor deficits are not addressed, these clients may continue to exhibit speech and feeding deficits, specifically during co-articulation or connected speech.
Oral-motor/placement, speech-feeding therapy should only be provided from speech-language pathologists (SLP’s) who have been trained through continuing education in this specialty. Therapists through TalkTools Therapy are trained in these techniques.