Children's Speech and Language Therapy
Speech and language therapists (SLTs) are registered allied health professionals (a trained health professional who isn’t a doctor or nurse). They aim to help to develop the skills of parents/carers and other people who support the child in their everyday environments. This ensures that therapy can be non-intrusive, practical and the most effective for the child/young person.
The Speech and Language Therapy Service supports children and young people in Cornwall aged 0-19 years who have difficulties with;
- Understanding what is said to them
- Learning to talk
- Talking clearly (saying speech sounds)
- Swallowing (eating and drinking)
- Using language to interact with other people
Everyone can play a part, sometimes as part of a child’s therapy we will offer training to parents and other people working with the child. Some preschools and schools may already have attended training that will benefit children with speech and language needs and may be able to provide what your child needs without needing to contact to our service.
Not all requests for help will need to have a face-to-face appointment; after a telephone consultation some may get a pack of activities and/or may be given advice and clear criteria to meet before contacting us in the future. Others may be signposted to another service/group, or attendance at a training course may be recommended.
Between the ages of 2 - 6 years old it is common for children to have speech sound errors as their communication skills are still developing. Some children speak very clearly from the moment they talk; others have lots of sound errors that gradually resolve as they get older. The speech and language therapy department do not need to work with all children with speech sound errors as many will develop their sounds as they grow.
We also have links with the Cornwall Alternative Augmented Communication Assessment Team (CAACAT). This is a multi-agency team made up of professionals from Cornwall Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (CFT) and Cornwall Council. CAACAT can provide an assessment to establish whether a young person would benefit from using a voice-output communication aid, up until their 18th birthday. Referrals to CAACAT are through the student’s speech and language therapist only. Further information can be found here https://www.cornwall.gov.uk/aac
From 4 October 2021 call the Request for Help team on 01208 256262 Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm. (Please get consent to discuss your concerns from the child’s parents before calling.
We would value your feedback so please take the time to complete our survey – Version for Parents and Version for children. https://www.oc-meridian.com/CFT/survey/SALT