Thursday, May 18, 2017

FROM SPEECH ISSUES TO BECOMING A SPEECH PATHOLOGIST


Posted on May 18, 2017 by Lisette Ponce


Wade Smith, one of our talented Pediatric Speech and Language Pathologist, has been working in the field of speech therapy for over 6 years.
His personal story has fueled his passion to help others and Wade wants every parent out there to know that “they are not alone!”

Why did you choose Speech Pathology as a career path?

“As a child, I had struggled with speech disorders, where I would stutter my words and it made me feel very self-conscious around others. I went to speech therapy for many years and it wasn’t until I was 18- years old, when I met an incredible Speech Pathologist and my speech improved drastically. As a result, my self-esteem sky-rocketed and I realized at that moment the importance of this career. I, then, decided to dedicate my life to helping others with speech disorders.”

What training and experience do you have with autism?

“My training began in Idaho, where I later received my certification. I truly enjoy working with autistic children, as the speech methods I use with them are slightly different. For instance, instead of showing the child a ball and having them repeat the word “ball” back to you, I have found it impactful when I introduce it to them in sign-language first. The goal is not solely based on the achievement of saying a word, it is also a personal goal for the child to become familiar with the meaning of the word and then mastering the pronunciation of the word.”

What is one recent trend in Speech Pathology that you think is important?

“I believe that Evidence-Based Practice (EBP) is crucial in proving when something is working by eliminating when something is not working. It is based on the parent’s perspective, scientific evidence, and the therapist’s opinion. I also use skilled-intervention, which are different techniques such as, role-play, chant talk, chaining, cycles approach, etc. These two methods are integrated and practiced daily with our patients.”

Describe one of your greatest accomplishments with a patient.

“Each and every patient’s case is unique and with that comes different accomplishments, but one general accomplishment that I love to be a witness of is playing a role in relieving frustration for the parents and helping them communicate effectively with their child. It is very difficult to see parents when trying to speak with their ‘non-verbal’ child, for instance. It is clearly very upsetting for the parent as well as the child. The fact that therapy improves the whole family dynamic by increasing communication, confidence and connection is my greatest accomplishment.”

What words of advice do you have for parents if they detect or are aware that their child has a speech, language or feeding disorder?

“They are not alone! There is a whole community of parents that go through this. The first step is recognizing and admitting that there may be an issue as opposed to holding onto fear and keeping it internally. Early intervention is the best and there are solutions when visiting a Speech Pathologist and receiving therapy treatments. If you visit any one of our offices at Therapies 4 Kids, we will be happy to help your child and give them the self-confidence they need to communicate effectively.”

Wade’s personal issues with speech helps him relate to his patients on another level!

If you would like to meet Wade or any one of our other talented therapists, please call Therapies 4 Kids at (954) 356-2878 or visit one of our clinics worldwide.

Don’t forget to visit www.therapies4kids.com for more details and make sure to LIKE our Facebook page to receive updates and information regarding all of our services.

We look forward to serving you!  

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