Speech therapy aids those with communication problems often caused by speech disorders or due to injuries and illnesses. That’s where the vital role of a speech and language therapist comes in.
I definitely think the awareness of speech therapy is a developing one in Malaysia, and sometimes our role can be looked over. For example, we work in different settings and with a variety of clients. – Rishika Lazarus
At present times in Malaysia, speech therapy has yet to receive the attention it deserves.
26-year-old Speech and Language Therapist, Rishika Lazarus has been working hard to spread awareness on the matter, particularly on communication and swallowing needs, while her followers get a glimpse of her profession.
Serving Through Her Profession
Currently, she’s attached with a private hospital, aiding adults as a Speech and Language therapist.
Whenever possible, Rishika volunteers at the Inclusive Outdoor Classroom where she works with children of all abilities.
For 6 years, the non-profit organisation has been a safe space for these kids to develop social skills amongst others.
Cherishing Significant Moments
Though many, Rishika recalls an unforgettable moment. As a student trainee, she handled the assessment of a client whose tongue was removed due to progressive cancer.
It was when she realised the massive impact that a speech and language therapist carried.
The most interesting case that I ever experienced was when I was a student undergoing my training. I had to review a client that underwent surgery to remove his whole tongue due to the progressing cancer. I had to assess his eating, drinking and communication skills as the tongueis a vital organ for these. This case really reminded me how much we as Speech Therapists play a HUGE role in working towards improving the quality of life of our clients. – Rishika Lazarus
For Rishika, “communication is much more than words“. What keeps her going is knowing that she serves as an outlet , giving her clients a voice.
It’s important that we give all our clients the opportunity to express themselves. – Rishika Lazarus
Her role as a speech therapist allows her to help others express themselves. This is done through different means such as writing, signalling or gesturing.
Taking 2022 A Day At A Time
In the coming year, Rishika aims to go all out to spread awareness on speech therapy.
She makes full use of her Instagram page, sharing messages on communication and swallowing concerns.
An advocate for speech and language therapy, she invites budding therapists to reach out. Rishika encourages those finding their calling to consider speech therapy as a profession.
A Little Goes A Long Way
According to Rishika, it’s the little things that matter. Inclusivity and awareness go a long way to recognise how evident the impact of Speech and Language therapy is.
Speech therapists are constantly pursuing alternative communication methods that best aid their clients.
The heartwarming realisation is that their hard work and perseverance help many in need.
For those who would like to reach out, do visit Rishika’s Instagram page to find out more.
Affordable Speech Therapy In Malaysia :
Over 75% of the world has limited or no access to speech-language services. While these services are often offered in private hospitals and clinics and can be costly, here’s a list of options you can choose from :
- The Speech and Language Therapy services in HPKK UKM is a premiere clinic that serves the paediatric population and their families in Malaysia. Their paediatric speech-language therapists provide the most current and best care for a child’s communication, feeding and swallowing needs. Research has shown that children show more progress when families are actively involved in therapy, which is reflected in this family-centred practice that involves parents in all aspects of their child’s care.
- The Malaysian Association of Speech-Language & Hearing (MASH) aims to act as a professional body governing the speech-language pathology and audiology profession in Malaysia. They’ve also put together a list of contactable speech therapists.
- Homage is an award-winning personal care solution that combines curated and trained care professionals with smart technology to manage and provide on-demand holistic home and community-based caregiving to seniors and adults, allowing them to age and recover with grace, control and dignity. Homage’s core services include Care Assessments, Activities of Daily Living (ADL) assistance, Home Nursing Procedures, Home Rehabilitation services, including Physiotherapy, Speech Therapy and Occupational Therapy. Speech Therapy sessions are at a steal price of RM 170 per session, for 50 minutes.