Aphasia awareness month
June 2023 is aphasia awareness month, so we want to highlight what aphasia is and the Speech-Language Therapy team who support our clients with aphasia.
What is aphasia?
Aphasia is a language disorder that affects how you communicate. Aphasia can lead to difficulties with verbal expression (talking), understanding language, reading, and writing. Aphasia does not make you less smart or cause problems with the way you think.
Aphasia is caused by damage to the language centres of the brain, usually in the left side of the brain. Strokes are the biggest cause of aphasia in NZ. In NZ there are at least 17,000 people living with stroke acquired aphasia. Any change to the brain can cause aphasia such as traumatic brain injuries, brain tumours, brain infections and other brain disorders that worsen over time.
Role of Speech-Language Therapy
Unfortunately, there is no medicine for aphasia. At Laura Fergusson Brain Injury Trust, we have an amazing team of Speech-Language Therapists who support people who have aphasia and their whānau.
Speech-Language Therapists will set goals in partnership with people with aphasia and their whānau. Therapy activities will help participation in everyday communication activities that are important, such as ordering coffee at a café, using the phone and chatting with friends. Some activities help improve language skills while others help people with aphasia to work around the problems, empowering them to communicate as best they can and to re-engage in their life roles.