A Little Blessing

My name is Brandon Burditt. I was born with a bilaterral cleft lip and cleft palate. I had three surgeries in my first year of life; but that hasn't stopped me. Some say I am a little charmer; I love to cuddle, laugh, and play.
This is my journey...

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Finally Started Speech Therapy!

This has been quite the process. I was told to wait until he was three before we began speech therapy (ST). I asked his pediatrician for an order for a speech and language eval in March at Brandon's well visit. I wasn't able to get in for his evalution until the end of May. (Word of advice...keep calling. They told me I would be on a wait list, but never called me. Once I called them after about 4 weeks, they said "oh sure, we can get you scheduled".) So the initial evaluation took two sessions. I was told again I would be put on a wait list to have him begin therapy. Six weeks later I called asking how much longer, and again they said "oh sure, we can get you scheduled now". That's why I tell you, call...call...call if you need to. Don't rely on the rehab center to contact you right away since they have such a high volume of kids they see. Another obstacle I faced was I received a bill for $408.00 for his initial speech evaluation...yep $408.00!!! They claimed my insurance wouldn't cover this service. Lucky for me I do these kind of referrals in the office I work at for a living, I knew it was a matter of getting his primary care doctor to change his diagnosis so the insurance company would cover it. Insurance companies hate the diagnosis "developmental delays or expressive language delay"...FYI "apraxia" works much better. So anyways, it turns out that Brandon's speech therapist is related to his preschool teacher (mother/daughter). Yeah! They are both so awesome, I feel so blessed he has such great people working with him. We have had two visits so far. Brandon is really enjoying it. One thing we are noticing is that he loses quite a bit of air when saying certain sounds, (i.e. "sss" sounds). He struggled to blow air through a straw as the air instead comes out of his nose. I plan to discuss this with his plastic surgeon next month at cleft clinic to see if this mechanical problem is due to a structural problem with his palate that hasn't been fully repaired yet or if it's just going to take quite a bit of practice to get him used to maneuvering his tongue in his mouth to form proper sounds. Regardless, we are on the right path! I tried getting Brandon to count to 10 and sing a song so you can hear how he sounds. His attention span was not the greatest, but I'll try to post something else later. Best I can do for now, and by the way if anyone knows how I can get the video to show without being a "side view" please feel free to share...this is new for me :)