These are the basic questions
I get asked the most.
Q: “Will my loved one or client be able to speak again with The Teaching of Talking.” Secondly the questions is “How will I know if my loved one is a good candidate for this method?
A: I supply you with a free screening test and training video so that you will know without any question whether your loved one or client is a good candidate for The Teaching of Talking Method.
Simply stated that (1) If the person with the speaking difficulty can follow simple instructions, and (2) If the person can imitate or mimic vowel sounds, or simple syllables or words the chances are good for speaking improvement.
Q: Why should I have to do this? Isn’t this what we pay therapists for?
A: The key here is that The Teaching of Talking techniques can be easily used all throughout the day in all activities of daily living and they are conversational in nature.
It is far better to communicate, interact and share, than the drudgery of everyday tasks in silence. We train caregivers because they know each patient better than anyone, and know the language, everyday expressions and their communicative needs.
Since many with aphasia may easily forget what has been covered in therapy it is crucial that they use their new language at home throughout the day!
Q: How much time does this method require?
A: It really does not take any additional time to stimulate language, than to be silent and do nothing. Speech and language stimulation will teach you how to engage the person in talking whether it be single words, phrases or sentences throughout the day.
That is really no different than normal, at home talking. Imagine that your loved one will be talking (with your help) again, therefore cementing and strengthening your relationship.
Communication and speaking contribute to intimacy and closeness, rather than separation and isolation.
Q: I thought the Speech Pathologist was supposed to do the therapy?
A: The speech pathologist only does a small portion of the work and chances are, will not be able to provide “long term” therapy.
He or she is there to find the best way to stimulate your loved one, and train family members to use language stimulation methods that are used at home.
If you have been discharged from therapy or do not have access to professional services, The Teaching of Talking Method teaches you “How to do the “therapy” rather than giving up or accepting less than desired results since you do not have the knowledge of knowing what to do. You will learn to stimulate speech and language with those who don’t talk or have aphasia like a professional with 44 years of experience. I will teach you!
Q: How long does therapy take and how often?
A: Until your client or loved one is talking by him/herself or until everyone is satisfied or happy with the result. Often speech and language stimulation for severe cases may require years of stimulation due to forgetting, a common symptom of aphasia and the need for a constant model to imitate. Traditional therapy is often 2-3x a week for a short duration.
Q: “I don’t have a high school education. Will I be able to do this with my wife?”
A: Anyone can learn the Teaching of Talking Methods whatever their educational background.
I have trained caregivers who did not even have a high school education, and honestly many are able to do speech and language stimulation almost as well as me!
It is the desire of the caregiver or family member and the person with the speaking difficulty that often determines success or failure for better talking!
Q: He / She doesn’t want to work with me! He gets so upset! What can I do?
A: This is very common with spouses and family members. In many cases it is not a reflection on you, but often occurs when the family does not know what to do or thinks it does when it really doesn’t.
Family members are not therapists and often have no experience with aphasia or severe to profound speaking difficulties. You may attempt to help the person talk and it may not be the best approach to use. Inexperience often leads to frustration and anger for all concerned.
Q: I just don’t have the time, with everything I have to do around the house now! I HAVE TO DO EVERYTHING!
A: Often you will not have to put time aside for homework sheets, apps, or flashcards. You can help them talk by simply understanding what they are capable of and helping them say words, phrases and sentences in the context of the speaking situation, so it does not take a lot of extra time. You will learn how to do this with The Teaching of Talking Method when the speaking situation warrants it!
Q: What happens if we are not successful?
A: I have very few caregivers or therapists who are not successful. Although the teaching of Talking is an easy method to learn, it can be challenging. One must be focused and determined to help the person with the speaking difficulty. There may be days where you do very well, and on other days not.
People with aphasia have their good and bad days, just like we do. However, if you are having difficulties you can send me an e-mail and describe the problem, or show up on the weekly Go To Meeting Call and I will help you figure it out.
It’s like anything complex, even like flying a space capsule. There are bound to be problems in the beginning, and I am a “solution oriented” thinker. We can, together figure out what to do in order to achieve a successful outcome.
If not, our program is guaranteed. If within the first 30 days you wish to discontinue, contact us, and a full refund will be given. There is always trial and error learning whenever we learn anything. Expect it. The key is to hang in there and persevere, and figure out, with our help, other ways to modify what you are doing to succeed.
Q: My husband has an apraxia. Can you fix that with the Teaching of Talking?
A: An apraxia deals with the motor performance of speech which involves articulation or the production of speech sounds, and the rhythm and melody of speaking. At times a person with aphasia may also have an apraxia, and not be able to imitate sounds or words. Often therapy for an apraxia may need to be addressed before a language difficulty like aphasia. We will help those who have apraxia, however it may require additional 1-1 mentoring or a totally different approach for apraxia.
Q: It was suggested that we use an I-Pad device and apps for our home speech therapy. What is your opinion?
A: It is my impression that in some cases an I-Pad or computer may be the only alternative to communication, even though it is a poor substitute. Often it is used because there are limits to therapy one can receive.
It may also be the preferred method of treatment for those therapists who are very technologically savvy. They would prefer using technology, where the individual with the speaking difficulty may, in many instances prefer speech.
If you and your loved one wish to pursue speech therapy you must search for a therapist who is specifically trained in the oral approach to speaking rather than substituting an electronic device.
Technology cannot problem solve a complex speaking difficulty.
- It cannot relate.
- It can’t joke around.
- It can’t give you a wonderful smile and a slap on the back when you do something well. It can’t counsel you when you feel as though you are at the end of your proverbial rope.
- It can’t listen to you and figure out the best approach, and it sure can’t lift your spirits.
Technology and computers, although they may be helpful, can never be intimate, friendly, or motivating.
You will become accustomed to almost any approach that is taken. Once a commitment is made, the method you choose will be the way you communicate. Often people will say, “Well, we’ll use the device and maybe it will help in talking.” (Thinking they will save money, effort, or commitment)
That rarely if ever happens. To improve talking one must talk and converse. One needs a person to talk to. That person is the speech model, who shows the person what he or she must do and say to become proficient with talking again.
The model learns the best way or manner to get successful speaking and follows a set sequence for rebuilding speech with The Teaching of Talking Method and uses it at every opportunity to get better talking at home.
Q: Some people think music therapy or singing helps with aphasia speech therapy. Is that true?
A: Music helps initiate singing which involves the voice and saying words. Sometimes a person can sing the words to a song, but cannot initiate expressive speaking.
Singing and speaking are performed with different parts of the brain and they are very different in almost every instance.
Music is fun and almost always makes us feel good. Singing is often the result of something that was learned by heart, whereas speaking involves the actual construction of words, phrases or sentences continually and in the moment.
Music therapy may actually be a good modality to supplement speech therapy, however it should never be used as the sole substitute.
Q: Is oral-motor exercises helpful for those who have speech problems such as apraxia or aphasia.
A: I personally believe that in most cases they are not helpful and the scientific literature tends to agree with this. Unless profoundly involved doing exercises that do not involve simultaneous speaking have little to no bearing on the return of speech.
Most people with speaking difficulties which include apraxia of speech need direct work on their speaking. That involves learning how to move the articulators of the lips, tongue, teeth, and palate with sounds of speech.
Those with apraxia or aphasia also need lots of re-education in how to say sounds, words, and phrases. Actual work on any exercises without simultaneously saying sounds or words will not, I believe really make much of a difference in speaking.
The only exception to this would be someone who could not make any tongue movement and may have to learn to make sounds by physically taking ones hand to help move the tongue.
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Teachingoftalking.com Caregivers and therapists are taking advantage of my 44 years of experience so it will not have to take them that long to learn the best methods to help with the return of speaking, such as those covered in The Teaching of Talking Training Course.
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Moshe Mark Ittleman, M.S., CCC/SLP
Senior Speech Language Pathologist
Life Member: Certificate of Clinical Competence American Speech Language Hearing Association