Professional speech therapy vs. DIY speech therapy vs. budget? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 23 Old 07-05-2011, 04:55 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Our DD5 has a frontal lisp as a result of her thumbsucking. I know a few things about how to help her fix it (basically, teach her to keep her tongue behind her teeth), but not a whole lot. The main problem is that she's self-conscious about it, so if I try to work with her on it, she gets very frustrated and embarrassed. 

 

We homeschool, so we can't get free services through the school system. Happily, I found out today that our health insurance DOES cover speech therapy, which is awesome. However, it's still $35 per session, which is very hard for us to manage right now. 

 

So WWYD? Would you force the DIY speech therapy, or would you consider the $35 per session money that must be spent? If you've done at-home speech therapy, can you recommend any resources that will help me help her? 

 

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#2 of 23 Old 07-05-2011, 07:20 PM
 
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My suggestion would be to have an evaluation done and get into professional speech for a few sessions, and at your first session, explain that you cannot afford to come frequently and would really appreciate having them put together and teaching you as much as they can about a home program.  This is what we did with my son.  We had 5 appointments over 3 months and then nothing since.  It's been 6 months since his last appointment and he is no longer speech delayed, and actually ahead of his age group in expressive language! 

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#3 of 23 Old 07-05-2011, 07:46 PM
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The money we spent on speech therapy (thousands) was WELL worth it because it's a lifelong investment.  Go for someone professional. 


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#4 of 23 Old 07-05-2011, 07:59 PM
 
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Are you sure you can't receive therapy through the school district? Many will work with homeschooled children b/c you live in the area and property taxes go towards their school.  I'd look into it.  What about calling Child Find?  Also, if you live in an area with a SLP grad program, you might be able to take her to the university's clinic for free or for very cheap. 

 

This page is for NJ Child Find and gives the contact info so you can schedule a screening.  It's where I would start. 

 

My 6 yr old has been in speech therapy for two years now, and even though I can work with him, too, I absolutely think he benefits from the services.  I don't know much about a frontal lisp or whether or not it's something that is generally outgrown over time, but maybe a SLP would only have to be utilized for a year or so; even if you did pay out of pocket, it might be worth it since it would be temporary. 

 


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#5 of 23 Old 07-05-2011, 08:23 PM
 
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well we've been in speech therapy for several months now and she still won't talk :P HOWEVER, when we are there the therapist talks a lot about things I can do at home. The first session is an eval so that's a wash. We go through the hospital's rehab facility not the school. It seems a lot of the sessions we do with everything is actually ME in training (which I'm actually tired of). So I think you would benefit and it's not like you have to commit to life about it. It's about finding things that work for your specific child as all kids learn differently.

 

So yeah.. I think you should do two sessions :)  For us it's an hour a week and our insurance does pay. We couldn't do it otherwise... but I have learned techniques I can use at home. There must be books out there also.

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#6 of 23 Old 07-05-2011, 09:47 PM
 
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I am pretty sure your school district still has to provide speech therapy even if you homeschool. Look into it!


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#7 of 23 Old 07-06-2011, 12:34 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fuamami View Post

I am pretty sure your school district still has to provide speech therapy even if you homeschool. Look into it!



I believe they are required to use federal funds for your child. However, the quality may be an issue. Our almost 3 year old has been getting speech therapy via a combo of our insurance and early intervention. To save ourselves the insurance deductible, we were going to try the school district when she transitions out of EI at 3. The school personnel are insisting she be put into a self-contained special ed preschool classroom. They say she needs to have the stimulation of talking with her peers. Gee, take her away from her older brother that she idolizes and copies (you know the verbal one that said, "These flowers smell like pollination," at 29 months) and all her verbal 3 to 7 year old friends and put her in a classroom with special ed 3 year olds that probably aren't very verbal. The school district people are idiots. So, check out the school district, but go for quality. 

 

BTW, the school district said that this August they would begin trying to get her to make two word combinations. She is now making 3 word sentences. Most of her advances are from me encouraging her. So, as someone else said, hook up with a private therapist and ask them to help you do the bulk of the work.


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#8 of 23 Old 07-06-2011, 12:35 AM
 
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I know you said your child's problem is physical in nature. For anyone else here whose child has a speech delay...We tried our daughter on a gluten free diet. Three weeks later her language took off. It could be related, it could be a coincidence. However, I have spoken to a few people who saw their kids' language take off shortly after stopping gluten.


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#9 of 23 Old 07-06-2011, 11:01 AM
 
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1. You can get services through the school, what quality those services are and the frequency of those services are unknown and vary by the 'therapist'/  She will need an IEP (i believe)

2. Private Therapy again qualify will vary by the therapist but you get to pick and choose based on the scope of your insurance.

 

I would definitely go with private therapy and also get her on the list for school services.  She may also need dental work if her teeth are misaligned, making it difficult for proper tongue placement.

 

 

$35/session-2 sessions a week is about $300 a month.(just guessing here)  IDK if your plan has a yearly max on services?

I would do anything for my kid to get him the therapy.   Can you get a night job opposite DH work?  A weekend job somewhere?  The extra income doesn't have to be a career move or a long term position, just to cover the therapy bills.


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#10 of 23 Old 07-06-2011, 11:25 AM
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We spend about $40,000/yr. on private services for our son. It's worth every penny. In fact, I recently decided to sell our 4000sq/ft home and move into a 900sq/ft home because, for me, the priority is accessing the best available resources to help our child and not to live in a fancy house. There is no substitute, in my mind, for a qualified professional...and the window of opportunity for language development is quite small. Once those neuropathways are formed, they are there for life. Children who wait much past the age of six no longer have the capacity to create the same pathways. I wouldn't gamble.
 

And while you may be able to receive services through the school, this usually means enrolling your child in a public preschool program. Most districts will not provide therapists in-home to children over age three, as they can then attend a public school program wherein therapists are on-site. If you oppose public school, this might not be a good option for you. If you don't have specific issues with public schooling, it might be a solution...though know that the nature and scope of most school-based therapies are not of the same quality nor time as those provided by a private individual.

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#11 of 23 Old 07-06-2011, 11:43 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you all. I just called the school district, and no, HSers are not eligible for services through the district (in spite of the ambiguous wording in the Child Find notices that I found irked.gif--thanks, Drummer's Wife, for the reminder though, I'd seen the flier at the library). 

 

I think I'm going to get the first eval and then see how much we can do at home. I don't think it will be difficult to fix once DD5 is on board, and I have a few ideas for rewards that will get her on board. She can fix her tongue and make the sound properly when I insist, she just doesn't care to bother. We do have a big state uni nearby--I'll call there too and see what, if anything, they offer.

 

Thanks all, for the reinforcement of the value of the therapy and the suggestions for other options. I am definitely grateful that insurance covers any of it--we have friends whose coverage does not, and they're in long-term therapy. It's costing them a small fortune greensad.gif


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#12 of 23 Old 07-06-2011, 12:46 PM
 
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my kid never had gluten

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#13 of 23 Old 07-07-2011, 06:02 AM
 
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OP- I think whoever you spoke to was incorrect. ALL children who qualify are eligible for services. Now, they may screen your child and say the problem is not severe enough (they did that with my son; although the therapist did send me some helpful tips to do with him on my own). But if you are a taxpayer, you are eligible. But it is true that the quality may be different than what you would see in a private practice.

 

babygirlie- unless you have your child on a gluten free diet, chances are he has had it. Almost all foods with any type of grain have gluten. Cheerios have gluten.

 

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#14 of 23 Old 07-07-2011, 08:08 AM - Thread Starter
 
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OP- I think whoever you spoke to was incorrect. ALL children who qualify are eligible for services. Now, they may screen your child and say the problem is not severe enough (they did that with my son; although the therapist did send me some helpful tips to do with him on my own). But if you are a taxpayer, you are eligible. But it is true that the quality may be different than what you would see in a private practice.

 


I'm sure you're right, but the last thing I need is to get on the radar for homeschooling. HSing is legal and oversight-free in NJ, but that doesn't mean that individuals and school districts don't give families a hard time on their own. If they'd been happy to hear from me and willing to work with me upfront, I'd probably go in with no concerns. As it is, I'm glad the woman didn't ask my name after the conversation I ended up having with her yesterday! I hate that it has to be that way, but the teacher's union is VERY strong here, and there's one government rep who tries every few years to enact major restrictions on HSing. I'd rather pay the money than jeopardize our HSing!


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#15 of 23 Old 07-07-2011, 08:15 AM
 
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Mellisal-I understand. I live in a right to work state with very laid back homeschooling laws. Our unions have no real power here (I teach in a union free district and it is the highest paying in the state). Good Luck with everything!

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#16 of 23 Old 07-07-2011, 03:15 PM
 
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My youngest gets weekly speech therapy through EI, crossing my fingers that he is good when he ages out early next year. We've spent a fortune of private therapies for DD1 over the last 3 years, insurance won't cover anything, sigh only 2 more years to go, hopefully. Everyone we've worked with has always been willing to put together packets , exercises, etc.. for us to work on at home once they know we pay ourselves. 


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#17 of 23 Old 07-09-2011, 11:23 AM
 
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Quote:

 ALL children who qualify are eligible for services.

This is actually not the case in all states.  Here in Wyoming, for example, HS kids are considered "private schooled" and therefore are not eligible for public school services.  I contacted HSLDA and found out that this is true in a few states, including my own. greensad.gif We went through this with 2 kiddos, one for speech and one for vision therapy.  It was especially hard because our insurance would not cover either treatment. 

 

My advice, if you live close to a university, is to see if they have a speech/language pathology program.  Ours does and they run a clinic staffed by masters students who are supervised by PhD level faculty clinicians.  The best part was that the costs were very minimal ($17/per week) because my DD was working with a graduate student.

 

Best of luck.

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#18 of 23 Old 07-09-2011, 11:45 AM
 
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as to the frustration issue...  Ds is getting speech therapy thru his school and we found that he did best with very short sessions - like 5 minutes at a time.  Any more than that and he got frustrated and angry and didn't make any progress.


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#19 of 23 Old 07-09-2011, 01:53 PM
 
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My son's speech therapist at Children's Hospital ordered her supplies from "LinguiSystems". You can get a free catalog at their site. I have purchased many of their items over the years and it is possible to use them well at home.

 

 

If you are near a Children's Hospital they have various scholarship funds for ALL income types that can help pay for their various therapy services.


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#20 of 23 Old 07-09-2011, 03:28 PM
 
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My son had extensive speech therapy in school.  Can your child attend PS for a few months?

 

If, I had to pay, I would consider $35 per session well spend. It will not take years, probably just a few months and it will will save years of embarrassment for your child and self esteem issues.

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#21 of 23 Old 07-09-2011, 03:34 PM
 
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SO here is one option -- it is 'playing the system' a little -- but I do believe the system is unfair.

 

Enroll your child in school -- but opt out of preschool and hold her back from K for one year. I believe all states allow you to do this. Then you can get FREE services for a year.

 

(we did that for DD)  duck.gif

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#22 of 23 Old 07-09-2011, 03:43 PM
 
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PS kindergarten is not even required in NJ

http://www.state.nj.us/education/genfo/faq/faq.htm#q3

 

 

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#23 of 23 Old 07-14-2011, 09:05 PM
 
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I don't believe that getting speech services for your child would jeopordize your right to homeschool. We live and homeschool in New York, where homeschooling is pretty regulated. We get speech services through the school, 4x/week for 30 minutes. When he was younger, it was one one one and now it's him and a few other children with the therapist.
 

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I'm sure you're right, but the last thing I need is to get on the radar for homeschooling. HSing is legal and oversight-free in NJ, but that doesn't mean that individuals and school districts don't give families a hard time on their own. If they'd been happy to hear from me and willing to work with me upfront, I'd probably go in with no concerns. As it is, I'm glad the woman didn't ask my name after the conversation I ended up having with her yesterday! I hate that it has to be that way, but the teacher's union is VERY strong here, and there's one government rep who tries every few years to enact major restrictions on HSing. I'd rather pay the money than jeopardize our HSing!



 


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