Speech therapy for children
- Public service
We offer services to children and young people under 18 years of age and to their families. The majority of speech therapy clients are children under school age.
A child learns to speak in normal everyday situations. Learning to speak, recognise words and understand speech is best supported by daily recurring interaction situations between the child and an adult. The development of the child’s speech production, speech comprehension and eating skills is monitored at home, at the child health clinic and in day care/school. There are individual differences in development. If you have any concerns about your child’s development, discuss the matter at the child health clinic or the child’s day-care location/school, where a referral can be made to child speech therapy. Speech therapists also offer telephone guidance to guardians without a referral.
A speech therapist can help, for example, if the child learns new words slowly, the speech is unclear for a long time, there is stutter in the speech, it is difficult for the child to understand the speech he or she hears or it is difficult to learn eating skills (e.g. chewing).
The subject of the training directed by the speech therapist may be interaction skills, concentration and listening skills, speech understanding, vocabulary management, narrative skills or speech clarity.
The participation and presence of guardians is important in child speech therapy. The speech therapist assesses skills by interviewing guardians and monitoring the child’s speech and understanding of speech in play and in various tasks. Pictures are commonly used to support speech development. The speech therapist and the guardians work together to find the best ways to develop the child’s skills in everyday life.
During visits, guardians are given guidance in home exercises to be carried out through play, games and tasks. The objectives and content of the visits and home training are planned together with the guardians. With the consent of the guardians, speech therapists cooperate for example with the child’s day-care location/school, occupational therapists, and psychologists. The goal is to find tools to support the child’s development in his or her daily life at home and at day care/school. The guidance can be given as individual or group sessions.
If necessary, the speech therapist may recommend further examinations, such as a hearing examination or an evaluation by a psychologist, occupational therapist, speech...
To whom and on what terms
Children under the age of 18.
Services for children with intellectual disabilities are provided in Espoo's rehabilitation services.