Speech Characteristics of Parkinson’s Disease

Parkinson’s illness can result in dysarthria and dysphagia. Dysarthria refers to difficulties with speech, whereas dysphagia refers to difficulties with swallowing.

It’s widespread for folks with Parkinson’s to expertise decreased talking volumes and bother expressing their ideas. As Parkinson’s progresses, folks with the situation may have problem swallowing and getting sufficient meals and water to take care of a wholesome weight.

Speech remedy is mostly the very best method for managing these difficulties. It will help folks with Parkinson’s handle each communication and swallowing points.

Keep studying to be taught extra in regards to the speech traits of Parkinson’s and the therapies that may assist.

Parkinson’s may cause voice, speech, communication, and swallowing difficulties. These difficulties can range between particular person folks with Parkinson’s.

Voice and speech

Common voice and speech difficulties, known as dysarthria, embody:

  • decreased talking quantity
  • hoarse or strained voice
  • breathy-sounding voice
  • monotone-sounding voice
  • shaky voice or tremor within the voice
  • extra power wanted to type phrases
  • problem with letter and phrase pronunciation
  • slurring of sure letter mixtures or sounds
  • adjustments to how briskly you communicate
  • adjustments to the pitch of your voice
  • problem discovering the suitable phrases to precise your ideas

Facial expressions

People with Parkinson’s can have bother making facial expressions. They may also discover it troublesome to precise feelings via vocal tone after they communicate. This could make it exhausting to speak clearly and successfully.


Parkinson’s can even have an effect on swallowing. Difficulties with swallowing are known as dysphagia and would possibly embody:

  • drooling
  • weight reduction
  • choking whereas consuming and consuming
  • preserving meals in your cheeks or mouth
  • frequent sore throats
  • meals or saliva going into your lungs (aspiration)

There are a number of the reason why Parkinson’s can result in speech and swallowing difficulties. For instance:

  • Parkinson’s impacts the muscle tissues and nerves in your face, throat, mouth, tongue, respiratory system, and larynx. As these muscle tissues and nerves weaken, you might need extra talking and swallowing difficulties.
  • Parkinson’s makes it troublesome in your muscle tissues to activate. This contains the muscle tissues you have to communicate and swallow, equivalent to your throat, tongue, and larynx.
  • Parkinson’s impacts the areas of your mind that management the speech course of.
  • Parkinson’s adjustments the best way your mind processes info. This could make it troublesome to be a part of conversations and talk your ideas.
  • Parkinson’s may cause your actions to change into smaller and fewer highly effective. This contains the actions you make along with your mouth and throat that have an effect on speech and swallowing.
  • Parkinson’s can scale back your sensory consciousness. You won’t notice that the quantity, velocity, or pitch of your voice has modified. You would possibly really feel that you’re shouting even when you find yourself talking at a standard quantity.
  • Parkinson’s can scale back your means to immediate your individual outward speech and start conversations. Often, folks with Parkinson’s who’re in a position to reply questions or reply to others have problem voicing ideas with out being requested.

Speech remedy can profit folks with Parkinson’s.

Speech and language therapists are healthcare professionals who can work with sufferers to assist enhance:

  • speech
  • language
  • communication
  • swallowing

They can assess present skills, make remedy plans, aid you strengthen skills, advocate assistive expertise, and extra. You would possibly see a speech therapist while you’re first recognized with Parkinson’s, then often all through the years.

Therapists will help you at each stage of Parkinson’s. They can spot any new difficulties and stop them from turning into worse, they usually will help you handle something that’s been inflicting you bother.

Communication remedy

During classes, your speech and language therapist would possibly:

  • lead you thru workouts that may enhance muscle energy
  • lead you thru workouts that may assist make your voice louder
  • train you workouts to do at house
  • train you communication strategies that can assist you specific your ideas and wishes
  • train you methods to preserve your power whereas talking
  • train you nonverbal communication strategies
  • train you find out how to use assistive gadgets

Assistive gadgets for speech and swallowing difficulties will help you preserve independence. Your speech and language therapist would possibly advocate a couple of completely different choices that can assist you. The proper gadgets and software program functions for you’ll rely in your particular difficulties.

Here are some listening to and speech suggestions:

  • Use texts, e mail, and different keyboard-based communication as a lot as doable.
  • Have particular tablets or smartphones devoted to communication.
  • Download voice recognition software program in your telephone, pill, or laptop that may be skilled to acknowledge your voice and talking patterns.
  • Use apps designed for people with Parkinson’s that may remind you to talk louder and slower.
  • Use communication tablets and gadgets that may play again the phrases you kind into them.

Swallowing remedy

Speech therapists can even assist with swallowing and figuring out what remedy may fit finest for you. Therapy choices depend upon how a lot problem you’re having with swallowing and assembly your each day really useful nutrient consumption.

First-line remedy would possibly contain adjusting your weight-reduction plan to softer, extra simply swallowed meals whereas on the similar time engaged on workouts to strengthen the muscle tissues within the throat.

Other potential remedy choices, in keeping with 2021 research, embody:

  • Video-assisted swallowing remedy (VAST). This remedy reveals folks movies of a typical swallowing course of in comparison with movies of their very own impaired swallowing course of. A 2012 study discovered vital enchancment in swallowing following this type of visible remedy.
  • Botulinum toxin (Botox). Botox injections into the cricopharyngeus muscle (positioned on the junction of the throat and esophagus) have been proven to alleviate oropharyngeal dysphagia in 43 percent of instances. Botox injections into the salivary glands may also be used to deal with drooling, per 2016 research.
  • Percutaneous endoscopic gastronomy (PEG) feeding. Dysphagia that’s inflicting malnutrition and weight reduction could require PEG feeding. PEG feeding makes use of a versatile feeding tube inserted via the stomach wall into the abdomen. It permits for fluids, vitamin, and medicines to be positioned instantly into the abdomen with out the necessity for chewing or swallowing.

Parkinson’s may cause difficulties with speech and swallowing.

People with Parkinson’s can usually have bother with the quantity, velocity, and pitch of their voice. They may also have problem expressing their ideas and feelings. Difficulties with swallowing can result in weight reduction, choking, and even meals coming into the lungs.

Speech and language therapists are professionals who will help with these difficulties.

They will help folks with Parkinson’s strengthen their muscle tissues, enhance their speech and swallowing, and handle any communication difficulties they’ve. They can even advocate assistive gadgets and present you find out how to use them.

Talk along with your physician about discovering a certified speech therapist that makes a speciality of Parkinson’s.

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