This annual event provides opportunities to raise awareness about communication disorders and to promote treatment that can improve the quality of life for those who experience problems with speaking, understanding, or hearing. We have many resources to help you celebrate BHSM every day. The American Speech-Language and Hearing Association (ASHA), provides a variety of awareness activities and tools that our therapy programs can incorporate into improving the education and understanding surrounding Speech-Language Pathology and the services our SLP’s have to offer.
To reinforce the important messages about communication disorders during Better Hearing and Speech Month, the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) has released tips to raise awareness to help more than 70 million Americans age 55 and older identify and prevent a speech, language or hearing disorder.
As people age, normal changes occur in hearing, speech, language, memory, and swallowing. Once an individual turns 55, their chances of having a hearing loss, suffering a stroke, developing dementia or Parkinson’s disease increases which can lead to a related communication disorder.
Warning signs of speech, language, and hearing problems include:
Tips for preventing communication disorders:
For most Americans 55 and older, unlike many disabilities, speech, language, and hearing problems can be prevented. The key is early identification and intervention; the earlier a problem is identified the sooner treatment can begin.
If you suspect that you or family members have a communication disorder, consult a certified speech-language pathologist or audiologist. Speech-language pathologists and audiologists play an important role in working with individuals who are 55 and older. These professionals can assist this age group in differentiating between normal aging and having a communication disorder. They can provide tips and techniques to prevent communication problems and keep your speech, voice, and language in top form.
For more information about speech, language, and hearing disorders and prevention, visit www.asha.org.