What are they, why are they beneficial, and how will it look?
Children with childhood apraxia of speech (CAS) need frequent and intensive speech therapy services in order to address the speech motor planning and programming difficulties that are present in their speech.
Apraxia intensives are therapy sessions which are structured differently than typical recurring appointment sessions. Apraxia intensives are structured in a large block of time each day (typically 3 hours with breaks embedded) for 1-2 weeks. However, this can be modified and adapted based on your child's needs. Following an apraxia intensive, there may be a break in therapy dependent upon each child's individual needs for a generalization period. Because RTC is a private pay company, this allows the flexibility of always structuring therapy sessions based on your child's individual needs not based on what the insurance company or therapy company at large allows.
Before an apraxia intensive, Kelly will schedule a free consultation to gather information about your child's current strengths and areas of need. Your child must have a diagnosis of CAS (diagnosed by a speech-language pathologist only) in order to qualify for an intensive. If you suspect your child has CAS but does not already have a diagnosis OR if a professional other than an SLP provided the diagnosis (e.g. neurologist, doctor, etc), Kelly will need to conduct a formal motor speech evaluation of her own to determine differential diagnosis.
During an apraxia intensive, you will expect to see a large amount of practice completed in fun play based activities. Parents should expect to be an active participant during the intensive as carryover following an intensive is key for generalization and progress! Kelly follows principles of motor learning (PML) in all apraxia therapy sessions, so during an apraxia intensive Kelly will structure each session to incorporate all aspects of PML. To learn more about PML see research below:
Maas, Edwin & Robin, Donald & Hula, Shannon & Freedman, Skott & Ballard, Kirrie & Schmidt, Richard. (2008). Principles of Motor Learning in Treatment of Motor Speech Disorders. American journal of speech-language pathology / American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. 17. 277-98. 10.1044/1058-0360(2008/025).