Find out what to expect at your child's speech and language therapy appointment.

Patient information

Before your appointment

Inpatients are seen within two working days of us receiving the referral. Outpatients are seen within four weeks of receipt of referral.

Parents, carers, a relative or close family friend are welcome to attend appointments.

If there is anything specific you need to know before the appointment in order to prepare you will receive information with your appointment letter.

During your appointment

For outpatient appointments please make your way to the children’s outpatients department at whatever site your appointment is at.

Occasionally, appointments for videofluoroscopy swallow studies may incur some unforeseen delays due to late running appointments in the imaging department.

Please note that we are a teaching hospital, so medical students may be present for some appointments. If you do not wish to have them in the room please let the nurse or doctor know and the students will be asked to step outside.

Appointments generally last approximately an hour however, the initial appointments in the multidisciplinary feeding clinic will last for 90 minutes.

During an outpatient speech and language therapy appointment for feeding and swallowing, the speech and language therapist will ask questions regarding your child’s feeding and general development and may observe your child eating and drinking.

During the multidisciplinary feeding clinic you will see a dietitian, clinical psychologist and speech and language therapist during one appointment. This 90-minute appointment enables a full case history to be taken, a feeding observation and a discussion and plan of the way forward. The clinic typically supports families of preschool children who have persistent difficulties moving forward with weaning, self-feeding, choking episodes and faltering growth.

The speech and language therapist will complete a comprehensive feeding and swallowing assessment and following this may suggest a videofluoroscopic swallow study, a specialised x-ray test that looks at swallowing.

This test gives a clearer picture of what is happening inside the mouth and throat when eating and drinking and shows where food and liquid goes when swallowing. Additional information will be provided before the test within a paediatric videofluoroscopy information leaflet. You will receive this by post with the appointment letter.

During paediatric videofluoroscopy swallow studies, where possible parent/carers will be told of the results of the test immediately after the assessment. If further analysis is necessary, a time will be arranged to contact parents/carers with the results.