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October is AAC Awareness Month!

    Thoughts for Caregivers About Augmentative and Alternative Communication

    AAC 101

    Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) provides a way for individuals with little intelligible speech to communicate.

    Low technology AAC is the use of pictures, gestures, or writing.

    High technology AAC is the use of a computerized device with voice output.

    Who Can Use AAC?

    AAC can benefit a wide range of individuals from the beginning communicator to advanced communicators, children, and adults alike. AAC can assist individuals in the following ways: individuals benefitting from a different way to repair communication breakdowns, clarifications of speech when others do not consistently understand their speech, and when the individual needs to communicate at times when they can’t speak or speech is difficult.

    Myths about AAC – Know the facts!

    There are no prerequisites for AAC use. AAC can be used even if the individual has verbal speech.

    Research shows AAC will NOT keep an individual from using or developing natural speech. There are no limits when considering who can use an AAC system.

    There are many benefits in having robust AAC support. The user develops or continues with an effective communication system to participate with the world around them. AAC also positively impacts speech and language development, literacy skills, social communication, and quality of life.

    How We Can Help at Lemon Tree of Dayton

    Contact a speech-language pathologist at our practice. At Lemon Tree of Dayton, we help you on this journey. We provide comprehensive AAC evaluations and submit the funding reports to the device manufacturers or other funding agencies. If your loved one receives an AAC device, we assist with set up and programming. We also offer family, caregiver and teacher supports and training opportunities.

    Think about it…

    Does the individual have difficulty expressing their wants, needs or thoughts in more than one environment? Do you or others need to have background knowledge or ask multiple questions to understand what that person is saying? Does the individual become frustrated or give up when attempting to communicate? Please consider AAC.

    Resources for Caregivers