Answers To 3 Common Questions About About Pediatric Speech Therapy After A Cochlear Implant

If your child's doctor has suggested a cochlear implant to help your child hear better, it can be a big decision. It is important to note that recent statistics have determined that as of December 2010, more than half of about 70,000 people who had received cochlear implants were children, so your son or daughter is in good company. However, cochlear implants by themselves are rarely enough to fully integrate your child into the hearing community, since their communication skills will still be significantly different from that of a hearing child. As a result, it is crucial to learn how pediatric speech therapy will impact your child following their surgery.

#1-What Improvements Should You Expect Immediately After Surgery?

Obviously, you know by now that a cochlear implant is not just a fancy hearing aid. Because it introduces sound to children who were born deaf or who lost most or all of their hearing at a very young age, the sounds that your son or daughter can hear are usually just gibberish to them. In addition, it will take anywhere from three to six weeks after the surgery for your child's ear to heal enough to proceed with a rehabilitation program, which will include different facets of a comprehensive speech therapy

#2-How Soon After The Cochlear Implant Can Kids Start Speech Therapy?

The implant's external transmitter can only be attached when the ear is completely healed. That transmitter must be activated and programmed to the specific needs of your child, so your son or daughter could technically start speech therapy as soon as three weeks after the cochlear implant surgery. At that time, speech therapy can begin as part of a larger hearing rehabilitation program, but speech therapy will not be focusing on words at that time.

Children who have never heard before or cannot remember having heard sound previously will literally need to learn how to process the new sounds. Until that happens, pediatric speech therapy in its simplest form is unlikely to provide any obvious benefit. As a result, you will need to understand the different aspects of speech therapy so you can make a plan for the future.

#3-What Does Speech Therapy Include?

A common mistake made by many people is that speech therapy is only about learning how to speak clearly. The truth is that it includes a wide array of treatments that are devised to help people communicate more clearly, which include but are not limited to, speaking words clearly.

Those treatments include assistance with learning

  • More effective lip reading

  • How to improve their voice quality and levels

  • How to interpret tones and pitch of voice

In conclusion, you child is likely to need pediatric speech therapy after a cochlear implant so that they can more fully integrate into the hearing world. By using the above information, you will be able to make better decisions for your little one and help them adjust to their new situation after they receive a cochlear implant. Contact a clinic like Achieve Center for more information.