Speech and Language Services

A child typically says their first word - other than "mama" or "dada" - between the ages of 10 and 15 months. Between 18-24 months of age, a child will begin putting two words together. An older child will have not only a larger vocabulary, but also improved pronunciation; a three year-old, for example, will be intelligible 75% of the time to persons outside his or her family. Though the stages that children pass through in the development of speech and language are predictable, the exact age when they meet these milestones can differ greatly. Minor variations, especially in articulation, are common and usually outgrown. More significant variations may indicate the need for speech therapy, or might be a clue to future communication disorders such as autism. The pediatricians at PHCA know that parents commonly have concerns about their child's speech development. That's why we have offered speech and hearing evaluations and speech therapy services for children of all ages since 2007.

What is a Speech and Language Evaluation visit?

Your child will be evaluated by our speech and language pathologist in a comfortable environment. Several aspects of your child's communication will be evaluated, ranging from receptive language (what your child understands) to expressive language (what your child is able to say). In addition, issues such as articulation (the clearness of speech) voice (vocal quality), pragmatics (social skills) and fluency (the smoothness of speech) will be addressed. You will receive clear directions on how to encourage your child's speech progress at home. If indicated, our pathologist may schedule further visits to begin therapy for your child.  Therapy sessions are typically 45 minute sessions that addresses objectives that are set by our speech pathologist based on the results of your child's evaluation.  Sessions are designed to target speech and language skills in a fun and engaging manner.  At the conclusion of each session our speech pathologist will meet with you to discuss progress and give you and your child "homework" to practice for the upcoming week.

To learn more, or make an appointment with our speech and language pathologist, please contact our Melrose office at 781-665-5131 x 3323.

Deborah Podradchik, MS, CCC-SLP

Licensed Speech-Language Pathologist
Joined Practice in 2007

MS, Speech and Language Pathology
Northeastern University
BA, Communication Disorders
University of Connecticut