Speech clarity (often referred to as “articulation” by speech-language pathologists) can be improved at any age (we’ve helped retirees overcome lisps!). The goal of articulation work is to create a clear, crisp speech pattern that is easy for listeners to understand. For some clients, this means developing “perfect” speech. For others, this means working towards a certain level of overall clarity, with some room for individual speech pattern differences.
Articulation therapy work addresses:
Speech and articulation work typically involves exercises and drill practice to retrain the speech mechanism. Monitoring your physical speech production is extremely mentally intense, so building cognitive stamina to maintain your new pattern in live conversation is a major component of therapy.
If you’ve grown up with a speech difference, it’s very normal to be self-conscious about how you talk. We also target speaking confidence and work on reducing habits like word-switching or other avoidance patterns.
If you want to work on your accent, we start by identifying the accent patterns that most impact your interactions and audiences. New patterns are refined, retired, and added as you progress. Some clients want to ensure that they preserve certain aspects of their native accent; others wish to sound as American as possible. Dialect work can include developing code-switching skills, the ability to turn certain dialect features up or down according to your audience and community. Advanced accent and dialect work can include working on broader goals like word choice, intonation, non-verbal behaviors, and other cultural elements of communication.
* Please note: Accents and dialects are not medical conditions. Because they are not medical issues, accent and dialect work is not covered by health insurance. However, many employers will reimburse for accent and dialect services because it improves employees’ communication effectiveness.
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