If you have dysarthria, verbal communication can be a challenge. Even though you’re able to speak, your words might come out slurred or difficult to understand due to muscle weakness or paralysis. Dysarthria can occur at the same time as aphasia following a stroke, or it can occur on its own. Many people also experience dysarthria as the result of a condition such as Parkinson’s Disease or Multiple Sclerosis.

People with mild dysarthria can often make improvements to their speech through techniques like speaking slowly and increasing speech volume. However, people with more severe dysarthria might still struggle to be understood, even after using speech techniques. In these cases, an augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) device can help. When there is a gap between what you want to communicate and what you are able to communicate, an AAC device might be the answer.

Lingraphica AAC or speech-generating devices can fill the gap when your verbal speech is not getting across everything you want to say. A communication device does not take the place of speech; it is a back-up plan when others do not understand you. Many people with dysarthria communicate with a combination of verbal speech and a device.

The devices use a system of icons that feature pictures, text and verbal output. If you also have aphasia, these icons are designed to be easy to identify and understand. They come pre-programmed with many common words and phrases, but they are also simple to program. This means you can add in icons that are meaningful to you and can help you achieve your communication goals, whether that’s reconnecting with friends and family, participating in a hobby, or being more independent in your community.

The devices also feature text-to-speech to communicate whatever is on your mind – quickly type a new word or phrase, and say it once or save it for use again. Many people with dysarthria are able to use the device to cue their own speech. Once you hear the device say the word or phrase aloud, you can practice repeating it. The device also features mouth position videos and oral motor exercises to help you practice your speech and strengthen your muscles.

Type and Talk

Lingraphica devices are user-friendly and are easy to use, even for people who do not have experience with technology. They are also compatible with smart home assistants (like the Amazon Echo), to help you be more independent at home. Your device can ask your smart home assistant to make a phone call and even help with environmental controls, like turning on the television or adjusting your thermostat.

For people whose condition may worsen, or varies from day to day, the devices also offer the ability to record your own voice for future use. You can record yourself saying messages, names, and personal anecdotes that are important to you. Having your own voice to communicate your most important messages can be especially meaningful for you and your loved ones.

Caregiver talking on phone with elderly love one looking on.

To learn how an AAC device can help with dysarthria, schedule a free consultation.

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