THE EXERCISE OF CONVERSATION: SPEECH THERAPY FOR APHASIA

What motivates us to talk.

What motivates us to talk.

THE EXERCISE OF CONVERSATION:

SPEECH THERAPY FOR APHASIA

 by

Moshe Mark Ittleman, M.S., CCC/SLP

Senior Speech Language Pathologist

Author and Lecturer 

Many of you know we are on a tour of the country and will be on the road throughout the USA and Canada teaching and sharing The Teaching of Talking Book, Audio program, and our soon to be released Video Training Course. We are now headed west out of Houston for West Texas, Big Bend, and then points throughout New Mexico, before heading back East towards Florida where we will tour Louisiana, Alabama, Florida and then up the East coast to Canada and Nova Scotia. We will be sharing The Teaching of Talking book, audio and soon to be released Instructional video with caregivers, family members, University students, and speech and hearing professionals.

Conversation is Natural and Fun

 Yesterday we were at Camping World where we were scheduled to have some adjustments made to the motorhome. We met Kurt outside the gate who had a very friendly dog who jumped out of his truck and jumped up on me (lightly.) Kurt delivered travel trailers and was apologetic for having gotten in line for servicing before us. We had a nice conversation about dogs and esp. his.   Good ole boys, both dog and master.

Conversation is Instructional

We had a conversation with Danny about the hitch for the toad, and why it was so difficult to pivot and attach the car. He told us why, which was the fact that it was a new unit and needed to be used and “broken in.” Danny told us it would be a “few minutes and that he was going to write up the paperwork.”

Conversation is Entertaining

While we were waiting in the customer area we met Rita, a retired airline stewardess who told us about all the RV’s she and her husband had owned. She was traveling with her daughter and granddaughter. We met her granddaughter, Skyler who just loved Jackie, our dog, and asked if we wouldn’t mind if she walked Jackie around the dealership. We accepted the request and continued to talk with Rita as she told us stories of touring the country with her husband in their first RV when they were first married; A pop up camper. They were there to pick up a brand new motorhome and drive back to Louisiana, for Mardis Gras.

 Conversation is Informative

 After we left Camping World we had to get the tire pressure of the inner tires checked in terms of air pressure. We were first told the wheels would have to come off to attach valve extensions. Then the mechanic told us he might have a “miracle” for us and was able to visualize the valve stem of the inner tire and informed us that we would not have to have that done, and luckily we had 90 lbs. of pressure in each one.

 Conversation includes sharing who we are and what’s important

 When we got to a rest stop later on we met a young over the road trucker, who was on his way home to his wife after 5 straight days of driving. He is a war veteran and had served in Afghanistan for 2 tours of duty. He told me about his tours and the mistakes he made while over there. He shared his zeal for trucking and way of life and waking up each and every workday, Monday through Friday in a different city and honeymooning with his wife on weekends.

So what is the point Mark? Here they are:

  1. Conversation is full of rich information that is conveyed between people.
  2. It is an exchange of information, often very useful and educational.
  3. It can be very enjoyable and entertaining.
  4. It often takes just a simple statement to the other person to get the conversation started.
  5. It is an exercise that enables one to learn not only the name of another person, but something about their lives.
  6. It just takes a “hello” or a simple question to another person to get it started. Within minutes it can seem like you have a new best friend.

 But here’s the clincher:

 Many of the same methods and principles of engaging in conversation are also true of the method of The Teaching of Talking. That’s why it is helpful to many children and adults with delayed onset of speech and language and acquired speaking difficulties from neurological trauma and stroke with aphasia. People just seem to talk better when there is something of interest to talk about!  Caregivers and those with speaking difficulties are coming out of the shadows, or what I call The “Closet of Non-Speaking.”

 Caregivers, family members, loved ones and therapists who know how to stimulate language can help the person or child with delayed speech and language or the person with aphasia engage in communication interchange. Conversations are rich, humorous, and a lot of fun! Not only do Caregivers who know how to stimulate language engage those with aphasia into conversations throughout the day at home, but they are also engaging the person who has a speaking difficulty into conversations elsewhere with family, friends, individuals at the bank, restaurants, at the car dealership or service center, etc.   Potential conversational persons are everywhere and once the caregiver and individual with aphasia can utter phrases or sentences, even with cues, they are invited to venture out into the world and use their new speaking skills. (Coming out of the closet) Its like the old adage: If you want to master anything you must put yourself in the situation and do it; even if it requires the help of another person. It’s like a proverbial priming of the pump; the language I believe, is there, and stimulating speech and language with meaningful subjects is another way of unlocking the ability to talk. Why? Because it’s natural, fun, useful, and appropriate for speaking needs of the moment.

 A life void of conversation and interaction can be lonely and depressing. IT DOES NOT HAVE TO BE THAT WAY FOR MANY. Especially for social people who loved to talk. For them, speaking was their life and sometimes, their livelihood. People who enjoyed talking are often those who do well with speech and language stimulation due to their desire to talk and interact. THE DESIRE TO SPEAK EVEN FOR THOSE WITH APHASIA DOES NOT GO AWAY. Motivation levels to engage in stimulated speaking are usually high as long as the caregiver is capable and knowledgeable. Caregivers who are successful with the Teaching of Talking Method take the time to read the Teaching of Talking book, listen to the audio, or get personal mentoring from the author.

 You can learn to stimulate speech and language like an experienced Expert.

 You can learn how to stimulate speech and language with children and those with aphasia, as long as they are stimulable and responsive. (Stimulable means a person can imitate or mimic after you the vowels, syllables or words.) We have simple tests in the Teaching of Talking book to help you determine stimulability.

I hope you as a caregiver, loved one or therapist will find out more about the Teaching of Talking; a new approach to the improvement of speaking which involves family, friends, and therapists.

For more information click here.

 Moshe Mark Ittleman is a senior speech language pathologist who has been helping people speak with clarity for over 40 years. He has spent years in direct one on one speech therapy with those who have had brain injury, aphasia and children who had not developed speech and language normally. He has worked in nationally renowned rehabilitation hospitals and has developed specialized programs for those who lost their speech due to aphasia.

 

Moshe Mark Ittleman, M.S., CCC/SLP

Speech Language Pathologist-Author

E-Mail:  markittleman@teachingoftalking.com

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Learn to Do Expert speech and Language Stimulation at Home with Children and Adults.

Learn to Do Expert speech and Language Stimulation at Home with Children and Adults.

 

 

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