What Is Online Speech Therapy or Teletherapy?

In response to COVID-19 restrictions over the last few months, the dynamic speech pathologists at Box Hill have been supporting clients remotely using teletherapy.

What is teletherapy?

Teletherapy is also known as online speech therapy or telehealth and is currently being used by an array of health professionals to treat clients while maintaining social distancing. This method of treatment is so effective that it has the endorsement of Speech Pathology Australia (SPA). In fact, SPA researchers have found little difference between the effectiveness of online and face-to-face therapy when delivered appropriately.

How does it work?

Sessions are hosted through a digital video platform like Zoom or Skype, allowing for face-to-face therapy. All you need is a laptop, tablet or computer with video camera capabilities.

Our therapists are happy to use your preferred video conferencing platform; however, our preference is to use Zoom. For teletherapy purposes, Zoom offers superior security features and user-friendly screen sharing options that facilitate activities between the client and therapist.

What are the benefits of teletherapy?

Importantly, online speech pathology allows existing clients to continue their therapy without interruption. For new clients, teletherapy provides early intervention regardless of social distancing and other external circumstances.

Global accessibility is also a big plus, and parents with multiple children will enjoy the convenience of home-based sessions.

What happens during a teletherapy session?

Just like regular speech pathology, each session is tailored to the individual needs of a client.

For an initial consultation, a speech pathologist will ask general questions related to the health and development of the client. They might then move onto direct assessment techniques like listening to speech in conversation or asking the client to demonstrate sounds or words. Young children might be invited to play a game with their parent or participate in an activity with the therapist.

Therapists might also ask a client to open their mouth and show their tongue movement, allowing for a better understanding of speech inhibitors.

How to book a teletherapy appointment

Contact our reception team today on (03) 9899 5494. If you are booking an initial consultation, our receptionist will ask you some general questions and send through some online forms you will need to fill out. Once the forms have been sent back to us, you will receive a link and meeting passwords for a Zoom teletherapy session. If you have nominated to use Skype or another platform, we will phone you to organise the details.

For more information about our teletherapy sessions, see our video explainers.

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