How do I know if my child needs speech therapy?

If you feel that your child is behind their peers then they may have a speech and/or language delay. This can include, but is not limited to, others having difficulty understanding what your child says, your child has difficulty remembering new things and/or following directions, your child has difficulty learning to read and write.

You can look at some language milestones of what is expected for different ages to see if your child is struggling in these areas. We have both early childhood and primary school checklists for you to view. Otherwise feel free to give us a call 0473 396 376.

What happens in an assessment?

Depending on the age of the individual, assessments may include the following:

  • 0-3 years: Play based assessment that includes parent report. The child is assessed through play.
  • 3-5 years: Preschoolers are typically assessed using a standardised assessment that involves pointing and speaking tasks. If the child finds these tasks too difficult, the therapist may choose to use a play based assessment instead.
  • 5 years and up: Assessment may involve assessing the person’s speech, language, voice, fluency and literacy skills. Assessments will be changed based on the areas of concerns expressed at the time the appointment is made.

Can I sit in on the session?

We are more than happy for you to sit in and watch your child’s/relative’s speech therapy session. By observing what happens in the session you are then able to follow up these skills at home using the same techniques that your therapist uses.

Alternatively, you are welcome to sit out of the session if you feel this is more suitable and come into the session towards the end to recap what occurred.

How often does my child need to come to therapy?

Most of our clients attend therapy on a weekly or fortnightly basis depending on their needs. Evidence shows the more often that a person comes to therapy the quicker they will improve. However, we respect financial constraints that private therapy places on families and will respect your decision. We always make sure there are follow up activities to do at home at the end of each session.

How long does therapy take?

The length of therapy depends on several factors:

  1. The severity of the communication impairment
  2. The ability for a person to learn new skills and remember them in different contexts
  3. If follow up work occurs outside the session.

Therefore there is no way to conclude how long therapy will take for each person. At Gotcha Talking we aim at trying to improve an inidividual’s communication impairment as soon as we can so it limits any impact on their ability to communicate with others.

When should my child start speech therapy?

The earlier the better!

Research has shown that Early Intervention with any communication impairment is the key to success with these children. The ‘magic’ age to start intervention is under 2 years old.

Starting intervention around 2 years of age has been linked to:

  • Improved social interactions with adults and peers
  • Improvements in language faster than children who started when they were older
  • Improved joint attention skills (including eye contact)
  • A better prognosis overall for all areas of development.

However, it does not matter what age you start, if a child continues to access quality intervention you will still see improvements occur.

What if we can’t come to the clinic?

If you are unable to come into the clinic for an assessment or therapy we can look into organising a school/preschool based sessions for you.

How does school based therapy work?

As part of our mobile service we are able to organise to see children at school within school hours. This needs to be agreed to by the child’s teacher as well as their school.

We ensure that both the parents/carers and the teachers remain informed about the progress of therapy. Being at the school also lets us liaise more directly with teachers and we can adjust our therapy goals based on needs that may arise from participating in the classroom.

Do you work with adults?

Yes, we work with most adult communication impairments with the exception of swallowing.

How much does it cost?

Please see our fee section for information about the cost of therapy and rebates available.

Are there any government rebates (e.g. Medicare)?

Yes, you may be eligible for some rebates offered including the Medicare Chronic Disease Management Plan. Please see our financial assistance section to find out more information.

How do I leave feedback or make a complaint?

At Gotcha Talking we appreciate any feedback and take all complaints seriously.

Should you wish to leave feedback or make a complaint please email us at mail@gotchatalking.com.au, call us on 0473 396 376 or write to us at Suite 1001 31 Lasso Rd Gregory Hills NSW 2557.