Frequently Asked Questions
Q: In what disorders do you treat?
- Stroke Recovery - improving communication and cognitive deficits after a brain injury
- Voice Treatment - Treat the loudness and voice strength changes that are common with neurological conditions like Parkinsons. Certified in Lee Silverman Voice Treatment and trained in SPEAK OUT!
- Dementia Consultations - evaluations to identify communication strengths, training caregivers on approaches and strategies to improve effective communication, reduce challenging behaviors and improve quality of life.
- All treatments provided in-home.
- Learn more about how Speech Spark stands out among speech therapy providers.
Q: What is apraxia?
Apraxia is a motor disorder where there is a "disconnect" between the brain's motor planning and the body carrying out the action. Often the muscle function and strength is normal, but the actions either don't occur how you want them to (You think "make a fist", but your hand doesn't do it) or the wrong movement occurs (you hold up 1 finger instead of 2, or you say "tac" or "pat" instead of "cat". The person may or may not recognize the error.
Apraxia can occur by itself, but more often it occurs with aphasia or dysarthria. Apraxia is caused by damage to the brain. It can be caused by a stroke, traumatic brain injury, neurological condition, dementia, brain tumors, or something else.
Signs of apraxia include:
- difficulty following directions to open the mouth, or make certain sounds intentionally.
- rearranged or substituted sounds or syllables.
- automatic speech (like greetings, or swearing) comes out easier than intentional speech (answering a question).
- errors are inconsistent.
Q: What is dysarthria?
Dysarthria is a disorder in clarity of speech caused by muscle weakness, resulting in the person being harder to understand.
Signs of dysarthria include:
- slurred speech
- abnormal rate of speech - some people present with slowed rate, others speak rapidly
- limited tongue, lips, and/or jaw movement
- difficult to understand
Q: How long are therapy sessions?
Most speech therapy sessions may be 30-60 minutes dependent on client need. We charge our rates as "per session", not "per minute". This helps ensure you get the best treatment for your needs, without the focus on the clock.
Some treatment programs (e.g. intensive aphasia program) may be longer, up to 2 hours/session for an additional charge.
Q: Where are your clients?
Treatments are provided throughout Green Bay, De Pere, Appleton and surrounding areas in Wisconsin.
Treatments may be provided both in-home and online (aka "telepractice").
Telepractice is a form on online, real-time 1:1 therapy that's provided over the internet. State laws require a license in the state where the client resides. Click here to learn more about telepractice. Send me a request to find out if this option is available in your area.
Q: Do you accept insurance?
I accept private pay -- Cash, Check, due at the time of services rendered unless prior arrangements are made.
If you have Medicare, many services are covered 80% under Medicare Part B.
You also may be able to seek reimbursement from your insurance company for some services. Ask your insurance company about their out-of-network coverage. This document helps to explain insurance and benefits. If requested, I can provide a receipt/invoice documentation for you to seek reimbursement. Prior to the evaluation, we can provide you possible codes that you can use when checking your insurance coverage.
Q: What forms of payment do you accept?
Cash and check. Payment is due at the time of service, unless other arrangements are made in advance.
Q: What happens after the free consult?
If we decide to move forward,
- You’ll fill out the required paperwork
- If needed, we’ll get a prescription for speech therapy from your doctor and schedule the evaluation
- We’ll go over the evaluation results, decide on goals and tailor a treatment plan for you
Q: Who’s a good candidate for therapy?
The best candidate is the motivated one! If you’re willing to put in the work and have hope that you (or your loved one) CAN improve, then you’re a perfect candidate. It’s vital that both you and your caregivers believe the program will work and expect improvement.
Changing neuro pathways in your brain takes work and lots and lots of practice. Improving vocal strength takes exercise. And compensating means the person has to be willing to change, willing to try something new.
Therapy is hard work. I’ll guide your practice and tasks, teach you and your loved ones everything you need to know and do. Like anything, the more effort you put in, the more progress you’ll see.
Q: What if I have trouble with something you’ve given me to do?
Treatment is individualized, that means it’s tailored to YOU. If you are having difficulty implementing one idea, we’ll try another. Can’t remember to practice? We’ll work out a plan to help.
Q: When should I contact you?
In general, earlier treatment is better, BUT it's almost never too late for someone to benefit from speech therapy services with a skilled Speech Language Pathologist.
Q: What do the letters M.S. CCC-SLP mean?
M.S. = Master of Science degree
CCC = Certificate of Clinical Competence. This means I'm certified by our national association, American Speech Language Hearing Association (ASHA), which requires a graduate degree, 1600+ hours of clinical experience, passing a national exam, 30 hours of continuing education every 3 years. Not all Speech therapists are certified. Learn more here.
SLP = Speech Language Pathologist. A Speech Language Pathologist diagnoses and treats communication and swallowing disorders and requires a state license to practice.
Q: What is the difference between a Speech Pathologist and a Speech Therapist?
There usually isn't one. In everyday conversation, the terms are often used interchangeably. "Speech Therapist" is the title used in the U.K., and is the more common term. "Speech Pathologist" is the more accurate title in the United States.
Q: Do you treat Autism?
Q: Are you on social media?
Yes! We use social media to offer motivational images, educational articles, blog post updates, the latest research, inspirational stories and resources.
"Like" us on Facebook and select "see first"
"Follow" us on Twitter
You are welcome to check out my LinkedIn profile.
We offer a variety of Pinterest specialty boards with the latest research and resources. Click on the word below to go directly to the topic, then choose the red "follow" button so they show up in your feed. Aphasia | Dementia | Apraxia | Dysarthria | Voice
For questions regarding Aphasia and Aphasia recovery, please see our Aphasia FAQ.
For questions regarding Voice treatment and how we can protect your voice from the effects of Parkinson's, please see our Voice FAQ.