Pediatric Services

Provided throughout Gainesville, Lake City, and Northeast Florida

• Pediatric feeding and swallowing evaluations and treatment
• Pediatric swallowing disorders (including pharyngeal dysphagia)
• Pediatric Voice Disorders
• Apraxia of Speech
• Articulation and Phonological Disorders and Therapy
• Expressive and Receptive Language Delays
• Alternative and Augmentative Communication Evaluations
• Fiberendoscopic Evaluation of Swallowing

Pediatric Feeding and Swallowing Evaluations and Treatment

Through the teams extensive dysphagia management and background in conjunction with additional training of ARKJ, your child will undergo a comprehensive evaluation including evaluation of chewing/mastication musculature. If any impairments are identified within the musculature your speech language pathologist will work closely to incorporate an in clinic and at home exercise program to help gain improvements within this musculature. It is essential that you are committed to incorporating at home exercises as well for optimal success. Often times parents are learning and desiring answers to understand a feeding aversion versus a swallowing disorder.

If your child has experienced a prior neurological event or born prematurely he or she may have encountered hospitalizations. These outpatient visits or hospitalizations may have included consultations to a pulmonologist, neurologist, GI or ENT physician. Additionally, your child may have seen a speech language pathologist for a swallowing evaluation (modified barium swallow). If your child has been recommended a feeding tube or thickened liquids further swallowing therapy and education are likely beneficial for you and your child. During this therapy the child, parent/caregiver and speech language pathologist will work through a variety of different techniques including review of posture, diet modifications, review of prior swallowing studies and collaboration with your child's medical team to ensure optimal safety in reducing risks of aspiration related pneumonia through evidence based practices.

If your child has been evaluated by an ENT with findings of vocal nodules or polyps due to voice changes, a speech language pathologist may be able to help. There are behavioral exercises and intervention that can be completed with you, your child and the speech therapist for minimizing any maladaptive behaviors and returning vocal quality back to baseline. These consultations require an ENT referral and approval prior to the start of therapy with diagnosis by your ENT.

Childhood apraxia of speech is speech related disorder that impacts your child's ability to be understood by their listener. It is essential to have proper evaluation and diagnosis with your speech pathologist as the treatment for a childhood apraxia of speech differs from an articulation disorder. Apraxia of speech is a motor planning impairment and correlated later in life with reading disorders and related Dyslexia. Apraxia of speech errors are often inconsistent sounds during speech and difficulty with repetition. Through therapy and evidence based practices an in clinic and home program will be individualized and developed as needed.

If your child demonstrates consistent errors within a particular sound or placement of a sound; speech therapy can target these errors and aim to improve acquisition of age appropriate sounds. Through evaluation with your speech language pathologist differentiation between articulation versus a phonological disorder will be identified so that in clinic and home therapy can begin!

If your child is demonstrating challenges with following directions or expanding their vocabulary and mean length of utterances then he or she may benefit from an evaluation. Through this evaluation age related norms are completed and discussed individually for each child. If receptive or expressive language delays are noted therapy can help to improve these deficits.

If your child is a candidate for devices such as a Tobii Dynavox device or AAC device Wildflower Therapy offers evaluations to determine how additional forms of communication may be supported within his or her activities of daily living.

“Sometimes I believe in as many as six impossible things before breakfast.”

- Alice in Wonderland

For an appointment, call (352) 283-0595