38th Annual Van Riper Lectures - October 29, 2021

Van Riper Lecture Series at Western Michigan University October 29, 2021, 9 a.m. - 3:15 p.m.

Trauma-informed Care in the field of Speech, Language, and Hearing Sciences

Presenter: Na’ama Yehuda, MSC, Speech Language Pathologist

Biography: The distinguished keynote speaker, Na’ama Yehuda, is a speech-language pathologist and audiologist with over 30 years of experience. A clinician in private practice in New York City, she specializes in pediatric populations with expertise in the connection between communication, language, attachment, and the effects of early childhood adversity and trauma on development. Na’ama will address complex issues associated with childhood trauma, along with assessment and intervention strategies pertaining to communication development and auditory rehabilitation. Ms. Yehuda is the author of Communicating Trauma: Clinical Presentations and Interventions with Traumatized Children, published by Routledge, which was recently translated into Spanish. (https://bit.ly/3vThXmO) She is also the author of three works of fiction.

Target Audience:Students, professionals, clinicians, and practitinoners in speech, language and hearing sciences, social work, nursing, and occupational therapy

Recent years have brought increased awareness to the impact of childhood adversity through the lifespan and to the profound way trauma can affect development. This includes better understanding of the unique vulnerability of all aspects of communication to overwhelming stress. Traumatized children face a higher risk than non-traumatized peers for requiring related services or special-education placements. They often struggle with language, listening, attention, processing, regulation, and executive functioning. The prevalence of trauma is even higher in those who already manage disability, with extra risks for individuals with speech, language, and hearing disorders. The combination of difficulties can affect performance in everyday life and academic settings as well as complicate clinical interactions and outcomes. Speech-language pathologists and audiologists are often among the first professionals to see children who present with difficulties and delays. As such we are uniquely positioned to help support traumatized individuals and facilitate collaboration with other professionals. This so all may understand the ways communication challenges manifest during what can be perceived as ‘neutral interactions’ as well as in response to traumatic reminders and emotionally charged narrative. Familiarity with communication realities and their clinical presentations in traumatized individuals can help minimize communication failure while optimizing assessment, intervention, and rehabilitation. This daylong workshop will utilize multiple case-study examples in conjunction with research and clinical literature to describe how various childhood traumas can manifest in one’s ability to relate, regulate, attend, listen, comprehend, socialize, and communicate. Possible ways to understand, respond, and support traumatized individuals will be explored, along with practical suggestions for optimizing assessment, differential diagnosis, and intervention to improve communication, behavior, learning, and utilization of the supports offered. Audience questions and discussion will be welcomed. Polling and/or post-test questions can be included.

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