Making Lismore Part of a Nation for Communication

Making Lismore Part of a Nation for Communication
Every day more than 1.1 million Australians have difficulty communicating says local Speech Pathologist Karen Kostal, who is raising awareness during Speech Pathology Week in the Lismore community.

Speech Pathologists are aiming to make Australia a ‘Nation for Communication’ by increasing the understanding of communication disorders and how they impact on people’s lives.

“Sadly many people with a communication disorder suffer in silence and most of us take communication for granted,” said Karen Kostal.

“It’s estimated that one in five people will experience communication difficulties at some point in their lives. This can range from mild to very severe and can impact on the way they participate in family life, the community, education and the workplace,” Ms Kostal said.

Around 13,000 Australians use electronic communication aids to get their message across, while 20 per cent of four year olds have difficulty understanding or using language.

“Over 1.1 million Australians have a communication or swallowing disorder that impacts on the quality of their life. That is roughly the same number of Australians who live with diabetes and three times the number of Australians who suffer from dementia!

But speech disorders don’t just affect the young. At least 30 per cent of people post-stroke suffer loss of language, with 85 per cent of those with Parkinson’s disease having voice, speech and/or swallowing difficulties.

Three in every 1,000 newborns have hearing loss, which without intervention can affect their speech, language and literacy. Indigenous children have three times more hearing problems than non-Indigenous children.

These are the challenges that confront speech pathologists every day.

“Over 1.1 million Australians have a communication or swallowing disorder that impacts on the quality of their life. That is roughly the same number of Australians who live with diabetes and three times the number of Australians who suffer from dementia!

“Speech Pathologists are specialists in all forms of communication. We work with people to maximise their ability to communicate in a way that best meets their needs and abilities,” said Ms Kostal.

They work with people who have difficulty communicating because of developmental delays, stroke, brain injuries, learning disability, intellectual disability, cerebral palsy and hearing loss, as well as other problems that can affect speech, language and communication.

Speech Pathologists work in a wide range of settings – schools, hospitals, nursing homes, universities, kindergartens, rehabilitation centres, community health centres, private practice and mental health services.

Recent News:

Comments are closed.