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PROMPT therapy- is it right for my child?


PROMPT therapy (PROMPT stands for "Physical Prompts for Restructuring Oral Muscular Phonetic Targets") is a type of speech therapy approach that uses multi-modality cueing (and specifically physical touch) to help people with speech disorders, such as those with dysarthria or apraxia of speech, to produce sounds, syllables, words, and sentences more accurately and fluently.


A trained PROMPT therapist will use their hands to guide a person's articulators (jaw, tongue and lips) into the correct position for making specific sounds. The therapist will also use different types of cues, such as visual, auditory, and verbal, to help the person focus on the specific sound or word they are trying to produce. This helps the client physically feel and understand where their articulators need to be for accurate speech production. PROMPT therapy can also be used to help people with developmental disorders such as autism, who may have difficulty with motor planning and sequencing, to improve their speech production by providing them with a clear physical model of how to produce sounds and words. What many people don't know is that PROMPT is not just about the technique (the physical cueing on the client's face) but a comprehensive speech-language diagnostic and treatment framework.


PROMPT therapy can be a highly effective treatment option for many individuals with speech disorders, but it does have some limitations:

  1. Accessibility: PROMPT therapy requires trained therapists who are proficient in using the technique, which can make it difficult for some clients to access the therapy.

  2. Time-consuming: PROMPT therapy sessions can be quite time-consuming, requiring regular and consistent treatment sessions over an extended period of time.

  3. Expensive: PROMPT therapy can be costly, as it requires specialized training for therapists and specialized equipment.

  4. Limited generalization: PROMPT therapy focuses on specific sounds or words, and the individual may not be able to generalize the skills to different words; however this is very client specific.

  5. Dependence on therapist: PROMPT therapy may make the individual dependent on the therapist for guidance and support, making it difficult for them to improve speech production on their own. For this reason it is very important to start fading PROMPTs as soon as the client achieves emerging consistency with the correct production of the target sound.

It's important to note that every client's case is unique and the limitations that apply to one person may not be relevant to another. It's important to consult with a speech therapist and work with them to find the best treatment options that work for your specific case.

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