It seems that everyone has become more familiar with telehealth or teletherapy over the recent years, but for parents of babies and toddlers it may not seem possible to access therapy for early language development in this way. You are probably thinking how telehealth could help you with your baby or toddler? While the idea of trying to maintain your little one's attention on a screen for a whole session may feel daunting, teletherapy is a wonderful way to access Speech Pathology and Occupational Therapy services for you and your child. Most therapy team members these days are trained and well-practiced in delivering services via telehealth (thankyou COVID). We are an adaptive and creative bunch, and are always happy to support you in any way you need us to, to be able to receive age appropriate therapy via telehealth.
Teletherapy for early language development can be provided in a variety of ways. Your therapist may have some interactive games on the screen, with colourful, bright animations and music. There would most likely be some moving around games (eg- Simon Says) to keep your child engaged too and absolutely some singing and book sharing. You may be surprised how well your child engages in therapy via a screen.
Play-based therapy is another wonderful way to promote early language development. Getting face to face with your child, playing tea-parties or building towers, with your therapist right there with you supporting your every communication interaction! Teletherapy sessions can provide a wonderful opportunity for parent coaching and support. Your child’s therapist can help empower you to be the vector for change, providing feedback, language models and strategies in real time for improving communication and language acquisition while you and your child play and learn in the comfort of your home.
Another benefit of a teletherapy session is that all intervention and examples are able to be provided in your child’s home environment, using the toys and resources that you have access to everyday. This will help your little one to feel comfortable and will help you to be able to implement the strategies discussed between sessions. Learning how to use your toys, your books, your games and your home to practice developing language skills – therapy does not get any more functional and meaningful than this!
No matter the age, teletherapy sessions are an increasingly popular option for Speech Pathology or Occupational Therapy services. Trying teletherapy services can increase your access to and frequency of valuable early language intervention. If you would like to find out more about accessing teletherapy services for your child, please do not hesitate to contact Hanrahan Health via phone on (02) 4862 5063 or email at email@example.com.