Case Management Options and Therapy Strategies for the Child Born With a Cleft Palate The role of speech-language pathologists involved with a cleft palate child is varied. Management options and therapy strategies vary depending upon the age of the child, adequacy of the velopharyngeal port, and speech behaviors exhibited by the child. Generally, treatment strategies for cleft palate children can be placed into four ... Article
Article  |   October 01, 2000
Case Management Options and Therapy Strategies for the Child Born With a Cleft Palate
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Jon Hufnagle
    Department of Speech Pathology and Audiology, Illinois State University, Normal, Il
Article Information
Articles
Article   |   October 01, 2000
Case Management Options and Therapy Strategies for the Child Born With a Cleft Palate
SIG 5 Perspectives on Speech Science and Orofacial Disorders, October 2000, Vol. 10, 2-6. doi:10.1044/ssod10.2.2
SIG 5 Perspectives on Speech Science and Orofacial Disorders, October 2000, Vol. 10, 2-6. doi:10.1044/ssod10.2.2
The role of speech-language pathologists involved with a cleft palate child is varied. Management options and therapy strategies vary depending upon the age of the child, adequacy of the velopharyngeal port, and speech behaviors exhibited by the child. Generally, treatment strategies for cleft palate children can be placed into four categories:
  • Strategies for children from birth to 15 months-of-age.

  • Therapy strategies for children with velopharyngeal inadequacy.

  • Therapy strategies for children with velopharyngeal adequacy.

  • Therapy strategies for children with borderline velopharyngeal inadequacy.

Treatment for the 0–15 month-of-age child focuses primarily on counseling for early feeding problems and on parent education. Advice about the many types of bottles and nipples available can be important during this early, and sometimes stressful, time. The feeding process can be facilitated by informing the parents about proper positioning of the baby during feeding (upright) and frequent burping of the baby. It is also useful to counsel the parents on the use of various feeding aids and/or about how to modify a bottle or nipple to facilitate feeding. Advising the parents to modify the feeding time can be helpful. Initially, more frequent feedings are often recommended. Finally, some teams prefer the child to be weaned from the bottle before palatoplasty is done. The clinician can help in this transition by demonstrating to the parents how to move the child from bottle to cup.
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