Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need a referral?

It is not necessary to have a referral to see a Speech Therapist. Anyone is able to make an appointment. However, a child may be referred to see a Speech Therapist by a GP, Paediatrician, Psychologist, Occupational Therapist or school or kindergarten teacher

When should I take my child to see a Speech Therapist?

As soon as you become concerned about your child’s communication. Early intervention is vital ! Refer to "Signs to look for" for further information. If not addressed, communication difficulties can manifest in different ways, causing anxiety, poor interaction and further issues at school.

What can I expect?

The first session typically involves an interview during which an in depth case history is obtained. Following this, a formal or informal assessment is conducted to identify your child’s strengths and limitations. Once completed, a treatment plan with recommendations is prepared to target areas of concern. If a formal assessment is conducted, a comprehensive report with recommendations is included in the assessment cost. Therapy options may include regular individual therapy or a home program with review sessions with the Speech Therapist.

How many therapy sessions will my child need?

Generally each child’s communication concern presents differently, some requiring intensive blocks of therapy while others may do with a home program. To improve the likelihood of improvement, parental involvement is strongly encouraged at all times, especially during home practice sessions to ensure it is a positive learning experience.

Where is therapy conducted?

Sessions are conducted at the Doncaster or Forest Hill Clinics. Since Communication Corner is also a mobile service, sessions can also be conducted at home, kinder or school at a slightly higher rate.

My Child is Stuttering. What should I do?

Children who are still learning to talk often go through a period somewhere between the ages of two and five of what is called normal non-fluency, also known as stuttering. These behaviours are characterized by repetitions of whole phrases or words, as in “I like, I like, I like ice cream,” or “My, my new cat is nice.” Be aware that this is a normal part of your child’s speech development. Act in ways that promote easy smooth speech. Speak more slowly; listen to what is said, not how it is said; communicate well by pausing when you talk to give your child a chance to talk and letting him finish his own sentences; and show attention by nodding occasionally and looking interested in what he is saying. Signs that your child’s stuttering may be becoming more of a concern include:
• Repeating sounds and syllables three times or more, as in “The ha-ba-ba-baby is happy”
• Drawing out or prolonging a sound for more than one second, such as saying “sssssssssssssssssay”
• Showing signs of impatience or fear when stuttering or avoiding talking altogether
• Using “escape” behaviours such as nodding or blinking to break out of stuttering
• Tensing up and hurrying through repetitions
• Blocking the airflow or interrupting the voice during speech
It is common for some children between the ages of 2 and 4 to experience a period of normal stuttering. This is most likely due to the rapid rate of language development that occurs between these ages. However, if your child is repeating parts of words (e.g. "m-m-m-mum"), elongating sounds (e.g. "sssssnake"), experiencing frustration or looks as though it is an effort to say certain words, it is best to seek a professional opinion. Research has shown that therapy is more effective when children are younger.

How much does it cost?

Medicare Australia provides rebates for eligible clients where you can claim money back for your speech pathology sessions. Communication Corner is registered with Medicare, so you can claim a Medicare rebate for some sessions. Please contact your GP to discuss whether your child may be eligible. If found to be eligible you could receive a rebate of $48.50 per session for five sessions in a year. Communication Corner is also registered with major health funds. However, if you are planning to claim your speech pathology sessions through your private health insurance, please call your private health fund to make sure Communication Corner is registered with them. Please contact Communication Corner for assessment and therapy rates.