With April being Autism Awareness month, we figured we could highlight how Speech Therapy can benefit children diagnosed with autism. Speech covers a wide variety of topics; however one major topic that we work on is pragmatic (social) skills. Children are taught how to handle certain social situations, how to communicate and understand others and simply learn the aspects of life as they come. Children with autism typically have an increased difficulty with communication. Speech Therapy allows them to learn how to communicate both verbally and nonverbal. Verbal communication is helping them understand language, i.e proper grammar(pronouns, irregular/regular verbs), auditory processing and figurative language(idioms, multiple meaning words). As for nonverbal communication this allows children to learn how to maintain appropriate body posture, eye contact and body awareness when in a conversation with others. Sometimes children with autism are awesome with communication and pragmatic skills. They might just have difficulty with their articulation, meaning it can be difficult for others to understand them. Speech Therapy offers children the ability to learn how to understand where their tongue, mouth and lips need to go to be able to produce certain sounds. Speech Therapy provides children with autism the gateway to being able to communicate, understand and learn about the world around them.
Crystal Espinal BS, SLPA