breathing exercises

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What to expect

Breathing exercises

Breathing exercises are commonly used in speech and language therapy for individuals who have difficulties with the volume of their voice and those who find it difficult to sequence and coordinate breathing, voice and articulation in order to gain effective speech.

Breathing exercises can be highly beneficial when combined with speech and voice exercises in helping an individual to become a more effective communicator.

Breathing exercises are also effective in helping both children and adults who stutter.

What are breathing exercises?

Breathing exercises are a range of specialised exercises used to improve and control breathing which is a vital mechanism for effective speech.

Effective speech relies on an individual's ability to control and sequence their breathing, voicing and articulation at the same time. If there is a breakdown in the control and sequencing of this speech act, this may result in the individual not being able to communicate effectively.

Breathing exercises can involve a variety of exercises which will vary depending on the type of speech and language difficulty they are helping and also the severity of the difficulty.

The therapist will work with the patient in a step by step manner working at their pace and abilities. The general aim of therapy will be to increase an individual's control over their breathing, with the ability to control and sequence breathing, voicing and articulation at the same time.

Breathing exercises will initially focus on teaching individuals how to control their breathing. Controlled breathing may then be used with voice exercises e.g. sustaining an ‘ahhh' sound. The therapist will then introduce using breathing with speech sounds, syllables, sentences, paragraphs and conversation.

Other breathing exercises may include compensatory strategies for individuals who tire easily when speaking. Exercises may focus on teaching the individual to slow down their pace of speech and inserting pauses where necessary.

Deep breathing exercises may also be practised with individuals who stutter.

Breathing exercises can be used for a variety of speech and language difficulties. There are many different types of breathing exercises, most of which will be combined with speech and voice exercises. Each therapy programme will be tailored to the individual's specific needs and abilities.

What conditions can breathing exercises help with?

Breathing exercises can help with the following conditions and problems:

Children with:

Adults with:

What are the benefits of breathing exercises?

The main benefit of breathing exercises is helping the individual to communicate more effectively. Other benefits include:

Similar treatments / services that could help

Similar treatment options to breathing exercises and alternative treatments which can help individuals with communication problems include:

    Oesophageal voice training Alternative and Augmentative communication Less Silverman Voice Treatment Voice therapy Articulation therapy Stuttering and fluency groups

How can I arrange a speech and language therapy assessment?

To arrange an initial assessment with one of our speech and language therapists please email office@slt.co.uk or call 0330 0885 643.

Summary

Breathing exercises are a range of specialised exercises used to improve and control breathing, which is a vital mechanism for effective speech and communication. Speech and language therapy will provide the individual with tailor made exercises to suit their specific needs and abilities. Breathing exercises prove most effective when used with voice and speech exercises. If you feel you would benefit from any of our services or would like to book an appointment with one of our speech and language therapists please email office@slt.co.uk or call 0330 0885 643.





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