Miles, 68, had a stroke which severely reduced his ability to communicate. He had received some rehabilitation prior to his family seeking an independent speech and language therapist but felt they still had goals to work towards. He was able to use some single words, but these were sometimes the wrong one that he didn’t mean to say. He was incredibly frustrated, and his family felt that communication as a two-way street was difficult and there had to be more help available. Miles had physical difficulties which effected his ability to do things for himself and so his priority goal was for people to understand what he wanted, whether this be an extra blanket or that he was bored and what he wanted to do.
Following a detailed assessment of his communication strengths and weaknesses, a therapy programme was devised to address his core language impairment this included what he understood and how he could express himself. Therapy also focussed on communication strategies that could be used by his family to best support Miles’ communication, what he wanted and needed and beyond this. This included an holistic approach of communication techniques together with “low tech” communication aid such photos, symbols and talking buttons in the first instance with the aim to progressing this when the time was right.
After 8 weeks Miles felt less frustrated, he was able to communicate his wants and needs and his family felt confident in knowing how best to support communication. They feel this has made a huge difference to his quality of life, Miles continues to access therapy to work towards his next goals.