Answers to Common Questions
My child is two years old and is not talking. Is this normal?
While development can vary from child to child, typically children 18 months old have between 10 and 20 spoken words, children 2 years of age have approximately 50 words, children 2 ½ have approximately 250 words, and children age 3 have approximately 450 words. If your child is not using the expected number of words, it is a good idea to consult with your pediatrician and schedule a speech-language evaluation with a certified speech-language pathologist to determine if speech therapy is needed.
What is Occupational Therapy?
Occupational Therapy (OT) is available for children, adults, and the elderly in a variety of settings. Pediatric OT helps children develop the skills required to perform their activities of daily living. OT may also help with sensory regulation in order to help children feel more comfortable in their environment. These activities may include bathing, dressing, eating, playing, and learning. Through creative therapeutic sessions, children work to improve deficits in areas such as fine motor, gross motor, visual perception, visual motor, and sensory processing so that they can work, play, and learn to their full potential.
Will my health insurance pay for therapy?
Insurance coverage for therapy varies depending on plan and provider. Some pay for therapy regardless of the diagnosis, and some plans only cover therapy if the disorder is a result of a medical condition. Therapy Solutions of Georgia, Inc. will be happy to assist you in determining your specific benefits before therapy is initiated.
My child is having difficulty chewing and eating foods with chunks. Is this something that speech pathologists address?
Yes. At Therapy Solutions of Georgia, Inc. we work with children with both swallowing disorders and sensory concerns. Our speech-language pathologists and occupational therapists help children learn to accept, chew, and swallow foods with a variety of textures. We also help children who are coughing frequently when drinking liquids. Speech therapy feeding often involves participation in an oral motor program to strengthen the muscles of the mouth, while occupational therapy feeding often involves a step-by-step process working towards acceptance and consumption of challenging foods.
How do I know if my child would benefit from occupational therapy services?
If your child has difficulty catching or throwing a ball, appears to lack coordination when compared to other children their age, has difficulty keeping up with written work in the classroom, has a hard time learning letters, numbers, or shapes, reverses letters when writing, has difficulty manipulating small objects, has difficulty following directions with multiple steps, gets easily distracted by visual stimuli, dislikes being touched, has difficulty tolerating nail cutting, hair brushing, or tooth brushing, frequently bumps into objects, dislikes being off of the ground, and/or displays sensitivities to sounds, smells, or textures they may require the intervention of an certified Occupational Therapist. If your child has a diagnosis of autism, Down Syndrome, or sensory processing disorder, they may benefit from occupational therapy.
What are the certification requirements for a speech-language pathologist?
To be certified by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, a therapist must hold a master’s degree in Speech-Language Pathology from an accredited university. During the master’s program, students are required to earn at least 375 hours working directly with patients. In addition, upon graduation, therapists are required to complete a clinical fellowship year which involves working as a speech-language pathologist with both direct and indirect supervision for 9 months. After completion of the clinical fellowship year, speech-language pathologists apply for their Certificate of Clinical Competence from the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. In the state of Georgia, a license is also required to work in a hospital or private practice.
What are the certification requirements for an occupational therapist?
To be certified by the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy, a therapist must hold a master’s degree in Occupational Therapy from an accredited university. During the master’s program, students are required to complete two full time 12 week internships in which they provide direct patient care under the supervision of a board certified therapist. Upon successful completion of academic and patient care requirements, occupational therapists must pass a national certification exam. In Georgia, a state license is also required to work in a hospital or private practice.
If I suspect my child may benefit from speech or occupational therapy, how should I proceed with scheduling an evaluation?
To schedule an evaluation, please call our office at 678-377-9634. We will set up a time for you and your child to come in. A prescription from your child’s pediatrician may be required. We will also need a copy of your child’s insurance card upon arrival. Please see My First Visit for more details.
If my child qualifies for therapy, how long will they require therapy?
There are numerous factors which may impact the length of services with each child. Some of these factors include cognitive level, attention skills, play skills/social skills, behavior, desire to learn and/or please others, carryover of therapy techniques/suggestions in the home environment, origin of the delay or disorder, rapport/relationship established with the therapist, and consistency of therapy sessions. Our therapists complete a re-assessment (formal or informal) and new plan of care every 6 months for each child, to ensure their goals are consistent with their progress. Some children may only need therapy for a few months while others may require therapy for several years.