Aphasia is an acquired language disorder that results from a neurological event, such as a stroke or brain injury. While aphasia does not impact intelligence, it does make it difficult to understand speech and written words and express one’s self verbally and in writing. Daily activities, social interactions and learning new things that require speech can be impacted at varying degrees from the onset of aphasia.
Aphasia therapy focuses on rebuilding an individual’s natural speech. Multiple communication strategies may be implemented to achieve the goals established at the start of therapy; this approach is called multi-modal and may include gesturing, pointing, speech, writing, drawing and body language. A toolbox of resources is used to support different needs of people with aphasia and these tools can often be personalized to support individual needs and goals.
The Life Participation Approach to Aphasia (LPAA) was created by aphasia therapists to prioritize the individual with aphasia and their interests when designing a treatment strategy and plan. The LPAA mindset focuses on helping people with aphasia get back to doing things that they want to do and emphasizes the importance of consistently addressing patient needs from day one using supported conversation strategies that are multi-modal.
Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) is one of the multi-modal strategies that can support individuals with aphasia and their communication partners. AAC is a tool that naturally fits in typical aphasia therapy situations as a communication repair strategy and it can be a back-up for communication if a person with aphasia is struggling to find the right words.
Aphasia Communication Support
Research and learning from customer feedback has guided the development of a suite of AAC communication tools that can help individuals with aphasia and their families, caregivers and therapists. The focus of these tools, known as Snap Core First with Aphasia Page Set, is to support the person with aphasia on their journey towards natural speech with easy-to-use tools that focus on improving participation in everyday life and providing communication partners with supplemental communication strategies.
Snap Core First with Aphasia Page Set provides a single destination for a range of tools that can be customized to support the goal of getting back to natural speech in the following ways:
- Understand what is important to a person with aphasia through the Topic Interest Inventory
- Become a better communication partner by learning strategies in the Aphasia Training Cards and the Communication Activity and Therapy Guide for Aphasia
- Trigger verbal responses using Word Lists
- Support written choice interaction with the White Board
- Provide feedback using the Rating Scale
- Communication about relevant topics using Visual Scene Display or Symbol Grids
- Practice using Scripts and Recordings
- Customize Photo Albums, Maps, and Calendars
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