COVID-19 has been impacting our lives for the past two years. As restrictions begin to lift, the consequences that have resulted from these mandates still remain. We understand the frustrations parents face as their children struggle to progress in therapy while having to deal with the repercussions of COVID-19. Children who were previously receiving consistent therapy quickly had to adjust to times of isolation. This new lifestyle affected not only the children, but parents and family members as well. Whether turning to remote therapy or having to wear a mask, the pandemic has continued to impact how speech therapy services are delivered.
Speech-language pathologists around the country have done their best to make these changes as seamless as possible. Many have reimplemented in-person therapy, and have even attempted to wear masks with a clear panel to allow their mouths to be seen. Though these efforts are greatly appreciated, they do not change the fact that children are having to adjust to doing speech with a mask on.
Masks can be distracting and irritating, sometimes making it difficult for children to focus during a therapy session. School closures and mask mandates have resulted in children becoming increasingly anxious when speaking with peers. Along with this, many schools do not consider speech and language impairments as a reason to be exempt from wearing a mask in a classroom setting. This only creates more issues when it comes to communication.
We continue to put all of our efforts into ensuring the pandemic does not regress any progress your child has previously made. Though we understand the frustrations parents continue to face, we want families to feel confident in our attempt to get our therapy sessions back to where they were before COVID-19. Our goal is to improve your child’s language development, and we will continue to make that our top priority as we work together to navigate through these unpredictable times.