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Alternative and Augmentative Communication

Alternative and Augmentative Communication (AAC): communication methods used to supplement or replace speech.

Examples of AAC include (but are not limited to):

- gestures and sign language

- Speech Generating Devices

- communication boards

How we can help:

Nicole is a registered authorizer for the Assistive Devices Program and may be able to assist with funding applications for:

- communication display software

- low tech speech generating devices

- signalling devices

We also help clients explore high-tech communication options including symbol based or text based speech generating apps. 

Hearing Loss

Hearing Loss: Hearing loss can be present at birth or develop later in childhood or in adulthood. It can be genetic or caused by infectious diseases such as meningitis, recurrent ear infections, trauma, or certain medical conditions. Audiologists diagnose hearing loss. Hearing loss can cause difficulties in articulation, language, literacy and social communication. 

Hearing Aids: Hearing aids are small devices that fit in or on the ear, worn by people with hearing loss to amplify sound.

Cochlear Implants: Cochlear implants are electronic devices that stimulate the auditory nerve through electrodes placed in the inner ear, allowing some severely deaf people to perceive sounds.

Auditory Verbal Therapy (AVT): AVT is a method used to teach individuals to listen and speak using their hearing technology. It emphasizes listening and seeks to promote the development of the auditory brain.

How we can help:

Hearing loss can make it difficult to communicate. We can provide auditory training as well as different skills for communication when hearing is difficult.

Speech and Language Disorders

Dysarthria is difficulty speaking due to weakness, incoordination or paralysis of the oral musculature.

Apraxia is the loss of ability to carry out the movements necessary for speech, despite having the physical ability and desire to perform them. 

Aphasia is a language disorder caused by damage in a specific area of the brain that controls language expression and comprehension.

Speech and Language Disorders in adulthood can be caused by:


-traumatic brain injury

-degenerative neurological or motor disorder


How we can help: 

We provide assessment of our clients' communication skills and help them understand their brain wiring. We work with them to develop functional communication goals that will have a positive impact on their quality of life and we help them move towards achieving those goals. 

Swallowing Disorders

Swallowing disorders can occur in the mouth, throat, or esophagus. Signs of swallowing disorders can include:

-coughing, choking, or throat clearing during or after eating or drinking

-having a wet or gurgly voice during or after eating or drinking

-feeling like something is stuck in the throat or chest after eating or drinking

-needing extra time to chew or swallow

-having food or liquid leak from the mouth

Swallowing disorders can be caused by:


-brain injury

-spinal cord injury

-neurological disease (e.g.: Parkinson's, ALS, MS)



How we can help:

We offer comprehensive clinical swallowing assessments. Post assessment, we provide recommendations, make referrals to other professionals (as needed), request referrals for instrumental swallowing assessments (x-rays or scopes) and provide intervention as appropriate.

Voice Disorders

Voice Disorders occur when difficulties with voice quality, pitch, or loudness cause a decline in an individual's quality of life.

Gender-Affirming Services: some people feel that their voice and communication style do not match who they are. Gender-Affirming Services help individuals explore how to reduce the mis-match. 

How we can help:

We work closely with Ears, Nose and Throat (ENT) physicians to develop treatment plans for our clients who suffer from voice disorders. If appropriate, we help our clients apply for funding (through the Assistive Devices Program) for voice amplifiers, voice prostheses and/or electrolarynges. We also offer services in Gender-Affirming Voice and Communication change for Transgender and Gender-Diverse clients.

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