Correspondence to: Alice Lee, Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences, School of Clinical Therapies, College of Medicine and Health, University College Cork, Brookfield Health Sciences Complex, College Road, Cork, Republic of Ireland. E-mail: [email protected].
Abstract: Objective:To collect information on the usage of nonspeech oral motor exercises (NSOMEs) by speech and language therapists (SLTs) for treating speech sound disorders (SSDs) in children in the Republic of Ireland. Method:SLTs who had worked with children with SSDs were invited to complete an online questionnaire adapted from a previous survey conducted in the US by Lof and Watson (2008). Main results::22/39 (56%) of the respondents reported using NSOMEs. Information from a colleague about the usefulness of NSOMEs, continuing education, and literature influenced the respondents the most to use NSOMEs. Most respondents used NSOMEs as a “warm up”, mainly with children with childhood apraxia of speech, dysarthria, and Down Syndrome. Conclusion:NSOMEs are used by over half of the respondents despite the lack of evidence that supports this treatment approach. Continuous effort to encourage the application of evidence-based practice in clinics is warranted.
Keywords: Nonspeech oral motor exercises, speech sound disorders, speech and language therapists, Ireland