A Guide to Speech Therapy For Families

Peoria IL Speech Therapy

Those seeking speech therapy in Peoria IL should look no further than Mueller Pediatric. We want to get to know you and your loved one as we help in their growth and development. Our certified speech-language pathologists and staff will provide personalized treatment for your child's speech or language disorder. If you want to speak with a member of our staff today, get in touch with us here.


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We want you to know exactly what’s involved in speech therapy, so we’ve put together a small guide to help answer some of your questions. In short, speech pathologists evaluate someone’s overall use of speech and related actions. Language, swallowing, voice, memory and even cognitive disorders can all be symptoms treated with speech therapy.


Speech therapy is more personalized than other forms of therapy in the sense that there is a personal expert there to diagnose and treat the issue at hand. Whether the patient is young or old, speech pathologists can help either diagnose, treat or ease the condition. Though some conditions are not fully treated, our certified pathologists can assist in easing some of the side-effects that one may have, in order to better the quality of life for the child. The best first step you can take as a family is to schedule a Free Speech Screening to diagnose any issues your child may have.

Free Speech Screenings

Who Needs Speech Therapy?

With nearly 116,000 people in Peoria alone, there is a large demand for speech therapy to assist with related conditions. Contrary to popular belief, speech therapy is not only for young children––in reality it can be for older folks as well! Children or Toddlers usually attend pediatric speech therapy or early intervention speech therapy due to the diagnoses they may receive at a screening. Issues with speech development normally show at a very young age.

On the other hand, adults can attend general speech therapy for their specific needs. Conditions are usually discovered and/or developed early on in life but there are also various events that may trigger or cause a speech problem. For example, an adult may experience stuttering or voice problems from a stroke, dementia, or other brain injuries. Toddlers, Children, and Adults can all benefit from speech therapy services with one of our licensed speech pathologists. 

Speech-Language Therapy Services ]

The Benefits of a Speech Pathologist In Peoria IL

Overall, speech therapy can drastically improve the quality of life for children and adults alike. Most people often think that speech therapy only helps someone speak better. While this is true, it goes far beyond that. The underlying problems solved by speech therapy extend to overall communication problems. If someone can’t effectively communicate with the world, they are at a disadvantage.

With speech therapy and related strategies, individuals can be transformed into much better communicators. Those who successfully go through speech therapy can see improvements in their social, emotional and academic lives. Undergoing speech therapy is a great investment for a life of self-confidence and comfort.


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Speech Therapy Glossary

There are a lot of terms in the speech therapy and pathology world that may sound intimidating, but we want to alleviate any nervousness or confusion you might have. Below we've compiled and defined some of the more common terms used by speech pathologists and therapists:

  • Anomia: a language impairment which makes it difficult to remember words and names; common to most types of aphasia

  • Aphasia: a language disorder caused by damage to the language centers of the brain.

  • Apraxia: an articulation disorder marked by impaired ability to move or position the mouth, jaw, or tongue for speech production

  • Articulation: the process and ability to make speech sounds

  • Auditory processing disorder: a language impairmenet which makes it difficult to recognize or comprehend auditory information

  • Bilabial: pertaining to sounds made with both lips. 

  • Dysarthria: a motor speech disorder that causes unclear speech, often caused by stroke, TBI, Parkinson’s, ALS, or cerebral palsy.

  • Dysphagia: impaired swallowing, common caused by stroke.

  • Expressive Aphasia: a class of aphasia defined by labored, non-fluent, and agrammatic speech

  • Fluent Aphasia: a class of aphasia in which words are produced in longer bursts with less effort

  • Language disorder: any difficulty creating or receiving linguistic inputs

  • Lisp: a speech disorder marked by improper pronunciation of one or more of the six sibilant consonants, often caused by improper tongue placement

  • Motor Speech Disorder: a disorder marked by difficulty producing speech (e.g.: dysarthia, aphasia, or apraxia)

  • Neurologist: a medical doctor specializing in disorders related to the nervous system

  • Primary Progressive Aphasia (PPA): a rare form of dementia that starts with gradual loss of language

  • Receptive Aphasia: another name for fluent aphasia

  • Semantic Feature Analysis (SFA): a method used in naming therapy

  • Spaced Retrieval: a method used to help dementia patients recall important information over intervals of time to cement the information in memory.

  • Speech and Language Therapist (SLT): another term for Speech-Language Pathologist. 

  • Speech Therapy: The treatment of communication and swallowing disorders

  • Speech-Language Pathologist (SLP): a professional trained to evaluate and treat communication and swallowing disorders.

  • Stuttering: a disturbance in the normal fluency and time patterning of speech. 

  • Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI): an impact or injury to the head that disrupts the normal functioning of the brain. 

  • Visual Scanning: a treatment for visual attention deficits or neglect

  • Wernicke’s Aphasia: another type of fluent aphasia, marked by poor auditory comprehension and jargon speech.

Speech Therapy Strategies                                               

Speech-language pathologists use personalized strategies and techniques to prevent or even solve an existing speech condition. Many of these strategies include getting to know the person and their specific problem at hand. Getting to know the patient on a personal level allows the clinician to understand each patient’s problems individually.


Speech Therapy in Peoria ILThe first strategy that might be used to treat a condition is speech intervention or "Developmental therapy". Speech and language intervention are activities specially designed to get to the root of the issue by speaking via conversation to give feedback to the child of his/her speech. This may include pathologists having patients read picture books, flashcards and more to provoke certain phrases that will bring out the issue.

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Another strategy that speech pathologists use is articulation therapy. This is fairly straight forward when understanding speech/language issues. The expert running therapy will have the patient say certain sounds and train them to use their mouth and tongue correctly. For example, one may say “Ship” to evoke the harsh SHH sound which is commonly mispronounced.


The final set of activities that are often used, though there are many, is feeding therapy. This therapy is not for anyone with speech problems. Usually, early on in life, children who have major speech problems also suffer from swallowing/feeding as well.
This therapy uses multiple textures of food to strengthen the mouth and related muscles to improve speech and the overall ability to articulate sounds.

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Types Of Speech Therapy

We at Mueller Pediatric recognize that one method of treatment doesn't work for every case, which is why we offer specific, individualized treatment plans to best accomodate those seeking speech therapy in Peoria, IL.

Speech Therapy in Peoria IL

Mueller Pediatric Therapy is the leading practice for speech therapy in the Peoria area. We are Private Pediatric Agency serving clients from birth to 18 years of age, committed to providing your family with therapists who are passionate about the pediatric population and dedicated in helping your child develop to his/her fullest potential. 


See What Our Clients Think

"Amy Hopkins has been here with our family from the beginning. She made a family connection that will last a lifetime!!! Don't know what I would do without her. She didn't care that Kayden was under the table playing in dirt!"

- Erin Faw

"It is so hard to believe our last therapy is this week. We had a wonderful therapist who has done all the hard stuff for our future therapist."

- Bobbie Conover

"My six-year-old Autistic daughter has been receiving speech services from Mueller Pediatric Therapy since she was in Early Intervention. We were so pleased with Emma's work with her at the end of EI that we decided to keep her working with her. Since then, we have seen so much progress in our daughter's ability to not only talk (as she was barely talking upon entering EI) but to understand language and use it appropriately to make requests, express herself and interact with peers. The office staff has also been great in helping us navigate difficulties in dealing with our insurance provider. I recommend Mueller Pediatric Therapy to anyone I know who is looking for services to help children with delays."

- Alysia Short

"Our family has chosen Mueller Pediatric Therapy to serve our two children over the past 5 years. We've had 4 amazing therapists and great experiences with the company. We truly believe they choose the best to work and teach both children, and their families. The personal experiences and relationships we've witnessed make me proud to refer this company."

- Holly K.

"Mueller Pediatric Therapy was a great help to my son when our previous speech therapist fell short of our expectations. The owner, Erin Mueller, took a personal interest in my son’s case and assigned the therapist she felt would be the best fit for my son’s needs. Vicky jumped right in and within the first session had a diagnosis and therapy plan to go forward. We received more personalized treatment in the first month than we had in 6 months with our previous therapist. Vicky had a vast amount of experience that was evident in the way she worked with my son and the knowledge she was able to pass on to me about my son’s condition. She was so personal and easy to work with. I would recommend Vicky and Mueller Pediatric Therapy to anyone looking for a fresh start to their therapy needs."

- T.C.

"We have chosen Mueller Pediatric Therapy for all 4 of our children. Over the past 9 years we have utilized their amazing speech therapists to work with our boys while they were going through Early Invention. They have given them the skills and tools they need to jump start their speech and be able to start school with the confidence they need to succeed. They are now in 6th, 4th, and 1st grade and doing fantastic. My daughter is 4 1/2, autistic, and has been with Mueller since Early Intervention. When she started she was non-verbal, had no real interactions with others and was very withdrawn. In 2 short years she had become a totally different girl. With Mueller's speech, speech group, and OT services she has thrived. She greets people when she sees them, wants to play with others, and just over the last 3 months has started talking. I owe so much to the ladies at Mueller who have taught my kids, stood up for them, cheered them on and pushed them to become better! I would recommend them all day because without them, my children wouldn't be who they are today."

- Erin C.

"Graeme started speech services with Mueller about a year ago. The difference it has made! He speaks so much more and really enjoys time with his teacher Miss Maggie. He looks forward to his sessions. I know both Graeme and I will be sad when he is too old to continue."

- C. E.

"Erin is a very gifted and talented speech therapist. I was constantly amazed at her understanding of how sounds are formed and further amazed at her ability to accurately know which sounds my son was articulating and which sounds needed help. He constantly progressed while under her instruction. Furthermore, Erin truly cared about his development and ability to accomplish sounds. It wasn’t just a “job” to her, she cared, at a personal level, about his development. I was excited when Erin started Mueller Pediatric Therapy. The more people she could touch through her services and through her therapists, the more families that would be blessed."

- Dorine Aberle

Miss Emma (speech), Miss Jamie (previous OT), and Miss Amy (DT) have been so great with me and my son over the years. They have always had interest in what works best for us and listening to my son's cues and what he needs, how he learns best. Greyson has not always been the most willing to do things that come harder for him, but with the help from this staff, their consistent care and patient minds, he is thriving and has come leaps and bounds from where he first started. We are thankful, grateful and blessed to have these professionals in our corner. Thank you so much for all you do for us!

- Jenna Darnell

I would highly recommend my daughter's Speech Therapist, Brittany Hoffmire, because she was wonderful with Mackenzie. She really related to her and really connected with my child by catering to her needs, moods, and her actions on the day of her therapy session. Brittany was constantly working hard with my daughter and always made her laugh and smile. Brittany and Mackenzie had a wonderful connection of which I had never seen with any of her other therapists. Brittany has a wonderful and outgoing personality which really showed when she was working with my daughter. My daughter always looked forward to when Miss Brittany came to her house and always hated to see her leave. I would highly recommend Brittany Hoffmire to any parents looking for a speech therapist because of her awesome ability to work and relate to kids. Thank you very much Brittany for making a difference in my daughter's life and with her speech. You are one in a million. Keep up the awesome work you are doing!! Thank you!

- Nicole Berg

About Us

Mueller Pediatric Therapy, Ltd., was established by Erin Mueller, Speech-Language Pathologist, in 2008. MPT is passionate about providing quality Pediatric Therapy Services. We are the leading Pediatric Therapy Agency in Central Illinois offering a wide array of services for children ages Birth-18 years. We look forward to working with you and your child!