How Speech Therapy Strategies Assist Social Communication for Adults
Who do you go to for advocacy and support for neurodiverse social skills? Learn more about how our adult speech therapy can assist.
Neurodiversity Affirming Social Communication Approaches for Adults
You may be new to trying to understand neurodivergence such as autism. Or have been identified as a specific neurotype for a while.
How can you ensure the health professional team is using neurodiversity affirming approaches to maximise the supports provided ethically? And, why are there so many different opinions on the help to get?
Depending on whether you are reading this to assist with your own journey or to gain more awareness on how to assist a loved one or colleague, there is one thing we hope you can gain from this blog. We ashealth professionals have your best interests at heart. We will assist in whatever way we can to support your wellbeing.
What Can Speech Pathologists Add To Your Life Goals for Better Social Communication?
Let’s talk about goals to boost social communication for adults that take a neurdiversity affirming approach. The aim is to help you interpret and build social communication with a greater understanding of specific neurodivergent communication styles. In this way, you can finally represent yourself better and interact easier.
If you’d like to participate more comfortably and effectively in your community, sessions with a speech pathologist can be a great starting point.
At Voice Science, we acknowledge the wide variety of communication styles for each neurotype. Therefore, social communication goals will differ dramatically from person to person. We’ll always be mindful of your communication perspective and help you engage others more authentically and effectively.
We have broken down some areas that our team works in. Keep reading to discover if our service is a good fit for your needs.
What areas might you work on with our team?
Listening to Understand
Sometimes sessions in social communication for adults will need to target receptive language.
Receptive language refers to a person’s ability to understand and comprehend language. Our team will help you work on your receptive language if your assessment identifies that you may benefit from further support in this area.
Without having a strong grasp on the comprehension of language, correct use of expressive language can be very difficult. This in turn will make social language even more challenging.
Goals around listening to understand can include:
- understanding figurative language,
- following directions and instructions,
- and comprehending text and spoken language.
Expressing your Ideas & Thoughts
You may also need some strategies around your expressive language.
Expressive refers to a person’s ability to speak with the right amount of detail logically so that your listener gets your message clearly.
This areas incorporates the skills of
- logical sentence formation,
- being able to structure ideas and provide them in coherent and logical ways
- being able to explain past events and provide adequate background knowledge to assist the listener to understand
- Using the right words to express what you are trying to share
This area incorporates both expressive and receptive language, and how they work together. Pragmatic langauge helps you form and maintain conversations, friendships and relationships with others. Pragmatic language looks at the the ways that people use language to meaningfully communicate with others.
This is an area that we speechies at Voice Science have a huge passion in working on with our clients! Work on pragmatic language with ou team can include sessions to develop how you:
- understandand and use body language to achieve a desired outcome,
- understand non-literal language, sarcasm, jokes, humour when used as a form of communication,
- understand and interpret other’s perspectives and points of view, based on how people are feeling, the facial expressions they show and the voice tone they use,
- might minimise and solve communication breakdowns, arguments or misunderstandings
- understand your emotions and use communication-based regulation strategies them effectively when speaking with your family, friends, colleagues
And much, much more…
What strategies do we use in our sessions?
Let’s have a look some methods we use to keep your sessions practical and engaging so you can achieve social communication success.
In sessions we will use a mix of personalised strategies to assist you with your goals. These may include:
- Visual charts & diagrams
- Question cards
- Real-life scenarios
- Made up scenarios
- Real life simulation of difficult social activities
- Scenario analysis: trouble shooting events that happened to create a good game plan for next time
- Story / scenario retells and social communication analysis with various tech, apps and even YouTube
Having a range of resources at our disposal means our sessions are dynamic and really functional. They can be tailored to your personal social communication goals and provide a platform for development and growth in areas of need.
How Can You Work On Your Social Skills With Our Team?
We are all about options and finding the best fit for you. You can choose between online sessions (from anywhere in the world) or in clinic sessions. Keep reading to find out more about how our speech therapy sessions cover strategies for social communication for adults.
This is one of our greatest assets.
Online sessions will let you access our therapy sessions anywhere in the world.
They are super convenient and allow you to fit a session in during your lunch break or around their Uni/ work timetable.
Online presence is huge in our community, and is only getting larger.
It’s vital that you know how to communicate effectively one-on-one, and also when you speak via an online presence. This mode has only increased as our world continues to grow in our ability to communicate around the globe. You will get a lot out of your online sessions with our team.
In Clinic Sessions
Our clinic therapy sessions are held at our office locations at Level 2, 161 Collins Street, Melbourne CBD. They are a great way to practice social goals as we can incorporate increased work on body language and resource material that we have in our clinic rooms. In the clinic, we also have a coffee shop located on our level which can be a great way to practice those skills just learnt in the clinic room for everyday activities. This allows you to see the real impact they can have on your social interactions in real time.
Let’s Team Up! 💡
Our team know that no one is an island. Therefore we are very interested in working collaboratively.
When it comes to assisting our adult clients, we can work alongside other health professionals managing your care to ensure holistic goals are met more effectively.
This allows for complete understanding in regards to your unique strengths and weaknesses. We want to help you build your communication comfort and skill in multiple domains and we collaborate well with:
- Occupational therapists: to assist with sensory regulations & behavioural understandings. (By the way, did you know we have an in-house occupational therapist? Check our Ndis occupational therapy services for adults here).
- Psychologists: assist to understand your emotional & mental needs.
- Family & colleagues: to provide realistic and detailed information into your daily life, interaction success and future goals.
Obviously we will only work with people in your team if we have your legal and medical consent to do so.
What Goals Are Commonly Relevant to Improve Social Communication for Adults?
Sessions that follow your Social Skills For Adults Communication Assessment may include strategies for:
- Verbal and non verbal communication
- How to comprehend better what your communication partner might be feeling or wanting
- Tools to help you initiate spontaneous communication
- Techniques to keep the conversation going
- Techniques to help you enter large or small groups successfully
- Communication strategies to help you communicate interpersonally in all environments, especially those where you find it challenging including work or social environments
- Tools to start making phone calls or answer the phone if you avoid it
- Ideas to help you communicate desired expressions to better reflect your feelings and emotions more clearly where needed
- Tips to understand jokes or non literal expressions which are confusing
- Ideas to use your specific hobbies and interests to better position yourself in spaces so you can apply your new communication strategies as needed
- Techniques to help you understand other people’s perspectives through verbal and nonverbal interactions and why this can be important to forming and maintaining beneficial relationships
- Communication-based emotional regulation strategies
- Self knowledge and identity of specific neurotypes
- Self advocacy for social communication differences
- Connecting to and participating in meaningful community