Aphasia is a common language impairment that occurs after a stroke, making communicating difficult for those affected.
The brain condition occurs when the left hemisphere has been damaged from a blockage or rupture of a blood vessel in the brain.
Speech therapy makes recovery possible but requires time, patience, support, and resources.
The professional rehabilitation therapists at The Kensington Redondo Beach and our team of care professionals can help your senior loved one recover from their stroke and maintain a high quality of life.
Learn more about the benefits of speech therapy exercises, how speech therapy can reduce the effects of aphasia, breathing, and tongue exercises, what to expect in speech therapy, and where to find a supportive community that includes on-site rehabilitation services.
The benefits of speech therapy exercises
There are many advantages to practicing speech therapy exercises after a stroke. The sooner a senior begins speech therapy after their stroke, the better their outcome will be.
Speech therapy can teach seniors to speak, read, and comprehend language once again. For those struggling to regain these skills, therapy can still teach new communication methods.
Seniors with stroke-related aphasia may also experience issues with swallowing, which speech therapists can address as well.
Speech therapy exercises are critical in helping seniors attain the highest level of language and communication function possible after a stroke.
Some seniors may make a full recovery in just a few months. If your loved one does not quickly recover, they can still regain lost skills even years after their stroke.
Group speech therapy allows for practice communicating with others, increases self-confidence, and helps seniors recover quicker.
How speech therapy can reduce the effects of stroke-related aphasia?
Speech therapy can minimize the symptoms that seniors with aphasia experience.
Often, seniors with aphasia are prone to depression and isolation because they cannot communicate with their families and friends. Fortunately, speech therapy teaches them new ways to communicate.
Learning new ways to communicate can increase your loved one’s feelings of self-worth, allow them to participate in life-enrichment activities, and help them feel like they aren’t missing out on socializing.
Seniors at The Kensington Redondo Beach can live an active life, no matter what stage of a disease or disorder they’re in while receiving speech therapy from a highly trained speech therapist.
Speech-language therapists use breathing exercises to help seniors learn to control the volume of their voice and coordinate breathing, voice, and pronunciation to achieve effective speech.
Breathing exercises help seniors become more effective communicators by helping them control their breathing cycles. When seniors cannot control their breathing cycles, they take breaks in the middle of sentences and make it difficult for people to understand them.
Mindful breathing exercises are helpful to seniors with aphasia because it increases language production and attention.
One way seniors can practice breathing mindfully is to repeat sentences and breaths in front of a mirror.
Tongue strengthening exercises
The tongue is a muscle that needs to be worked out just like any other muscle. It can help improve speech to have a strong and flexible tongue.
There are various tongue exercises for seniors to practice to help them regain their speaking skills.
If your loved one has a difficult time sticking out their tongue, they can stretch their tongue by pulling it out for a couple of seconds at a time.
Another exercise that helps produce clear speech is opening the mouth as wide as possible, then touching the tip of the tongue to the upper teeth for a few seconds, and then touching the tip of the tongue to the back of the mouth.
There are many tongue exercises available for seniors that can help them speak clearly.
Practice speech sounds
During speech therapy, your senior loved one will spend a lot of time practicing speech sounds by repeating specific words and other sounds. Repetition is one of the best methods to help seniors relearn language skills.
Singing activities can also be fun and useful in helping seniors practice sounds and improve their language output.
A speech therapist may have your loved one recite the alphabet, count to ten, list the days of the week, and repeat common sayings and phrases.
Practicing speech sounds every day for at least 5-10 minutes can help your loved one improve their language skills and make it easier for you to understand them.
What to expect in speech therapy?
A professional speech therapist will assess and diagnose your loved one and then create an individualized treatment plan.
What goes on during therapy and how long therapy will last will solely depend on the amount of brain damage your loved one endured and where the damage occurred during the stroke.
A speech therapist may have your senior loved one engage in breathing and tongue exercises, swallowing exercises, and conversational tactics to improve social communication.
Exercises will be focused on problem solving, memory, attention, and organization. All skills needed to communicate effectively.
For seniors who are struggling to communicate or taking longer to regain their skills, their speech therapist will teach them ways to communicate nonverbally. Nonverbal communication generally includes pointing at pictures, words, or objects and using gestures.
How The Kensington Redondo Beach supports our residents
At The Kensington Redondo Beach, Our Promise is to love and care for your family as we do our own.
Our assisted living and memory care communities can care for your loved one no matter the level of support they need. Our staff is available around-the-clock to help our residents feel safe and comfortable.
We are dedicated to providing the highest levels of care and giving our residents a home where they can truly age in place.
Our beautiful communities include:
- On-site nurses
- A physician
- Medical administration
- On-site rehabilitation
- Physical therapy
- Occupational therapy
- Speech therapy
- All-day dining services
- Life-enrichment activities
- End of life care
Contact us to learn more about our exceptional assisted living and memory care communities, amenities, caregiver support and resources, and upcoming events.