swallowing specialist

11 posts

Alcohol, sodas, acidic juices, and coffee can all put you at risk for acid reflux.

I Was Told I Have Reflux. What Next?

Gastro-Esophageal Reflux (GERD) & Laryngopharyngeal Reflux (LPR) by Karen M. Sheffler, MS, CCC-SLP, BCS-S of SwallowStudy.com Introduction: Many people who have reflux come for evaluations by a Speech-Language Pathologist (SLP), who specializes in difficulty swallowing (dysphagia). Reflux can cause symptoms of dysphagia, namely feelings of choking, coughing during or after meals, food getting stuck, and more. I have heard people express fear of actually choking (asphyxiation – where the food blocks the airway). This sensation […]

@ on the keyboard can remind us of Advocacy for our patients, our field of Speech-Language Pathology, and for ourselves.

Advocacy in Dysphagia & Beyond (#ASHA16)

Introduction to Advocacy: Whether you work in the trauma ICU or in long-term care, advocating for your patients can feel like your full-time job (not to mention advocating for your department, your job and career, and for yourself). A nurse mentioned the other day how she has to constantly question and speak out on behalf of her patients. She joked: “no wonder I go home exhausted.” She said she started work one day telling herself: […]

Two bowls of soup that we could think of as the categories of "pneumonia soup."

Pneumonia Alphabet Soup (Part 2)

Pneumonia Alphabet Soup (Part 2): The Secret Ingredients by Karen Sheffler, MS, CCC-SLP, BCS-S of SwallowStudy.com (Parts 1 & 2 first published by MedbridgeEducation.com) We began deciphering the recipe of pneumonia in Part 1 – Pneumonia Alphabet Soup: Reworking the Recipes. I suggested that it is more important to think about how the pneumonia was acquired, rather than where it was acquired [i.e., community-acquired pneumonia (CAP), health-care-associated pneumonia (HCAP)]. Causes for pneumonia are multifactoral, and the […]

Photo of Steven Leder, PhD, CCC-SLP, formerly of Yale School of Medicine, surrounded by words from fellow Speech-Language Pathologists to honor his contribution to the field.

Aspiration & Lessons from Steven Leder

A tribute to Steven Leder, PhD, CCC-SLP Aspiration can mean “a strong desire to achieve something high or great,” per Merriam-Webster, or “a hope or ambition of achieving something,” per Google. Steven Leder, PhD, CCC-SLP achieved greatness. The phrases in the picture above came lovingly from Speech-Language Pathologists (SLPs) around the world upon news of his passing on May 16, 2016. He and his many colleagues aspired to shift the conventional and sometimes outdated thinking […]

Some people with head and neck cancer who are undergoing radiation feel that the taste of strawberry is better preserved.

8 Tips for Survivors of Head and Neck Cancer

8 Swallowing Tips for Survivors of Head and Neck Cancer by Karen Sheffler, MS, CCC-SLP, BCS-S of SwallowStudy.com Speech-Language Pathologists provide “life-altering” evaluations and treatments, according to The American Speech & Hearing Association (ASHA) in their promotion of May is Better Hearing & Speech Month (BHSM). ASHA raises awareness about the difficulties people of all ages have with hearing, communicating, and feeding/eating/swallowing. When I hear “life-altering,” I especially think about the diagnosis of head and neck cancer. […]

Dysphagia Evaluation Guides Treatment (Part 1)

Dysphagia Evaluation: Ask Many Questions! by Karen Sheffler, MS, CCC-SLP, BCS-S of SwallowStudy.com ******* This is Part 1 of a blog I created for MedbridgeEducation.com.  I’ve partnered with MedBridge to provide a discounts on your subscription. MedBridge provides clinicians and healthcare organizations a comprehensive education platform that includes clinical education, patient education, and home exercise programs. They are growing the Speech-Language Pathology platform. Subscribers get unlimited access to ASHA-approved CEUs with topics including: Dysphagia, Cognition, […]

True learning requires training and experience.

Dysphagia Training: Are You Ready for Dysphagia?

Are SLP Graduates Ready for Careers in Dysphagia by Karen Sheffler, MS, CCC-SLP, BCS-S of SwallowStudy.com There has been quite a buzz in social media, or should I say quite a tweet, wondering: Are we preparing our graduate students well enough for careers as medical speech-language pathologists, who may spend the majority of their day evaluating and treating dysphagia? I have been discussing this important issue with #SLPeeps, like Yvette McCoy, MS, CCC-SLP, BCS-S and Rinki […]

# Dysphagia Awareness Month

Why do we Need a Dysphagia Awareness Month? by Karen Sheffler, MS, CCC-SLP, BCS-S of SwallowStudy.com (June 2015) May was the American Speech and Hearing Association’s Better Hearing and Speech Month (#BHSM, @AHSAweb on Twitter and ASHA on Facebook). See my Better Hearing and Speech Month blog from 2014. In May 2015 there were 1,076 tweets under the hashtag #BHSM! Yes, I counted them. All great resources. Way to go Audiologists and Speech-Language Pathologists (SLP)! We rock! Of […]

It’s A Jobs Issue!

by Karen Sheffler, MS, CCC-SLP, BCS-S of SwallowStudy.com “It’s a Jobs Issue,”  stated Cynthia Wagner, MS, CCC-SLP, BCS-S (Clinical Services Manager for the Voice, Speech & Swallowing clinic at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston). Wagner inspired Boston-area Speech-Language Pathologists (SLPs) to take political action at a Boston Dysphagia Rounds in 2015. What is the Issue? Massachusetts is one of only 9 states (see list below) where an SLP with a Master’s degree cannot get a […]

A play on Hamlet's "To be, or not to be?" This blog asks "to chin tuck, or not to chin tuck?" for safe swallowing or to make swallowing worse.

To Chin Tuck, or Not to Chin Tuck? That is the Question.

By Karen Sheffler, MS, CCC-SLP, BCS-S of SwallowStudy.com Or is it? In this article, I will attempt to address the many questions on this hot topic: Are we advising patients to tuck, tilt, flex or look down? What do we call it? How do we teach it? What are the pros and cons of the chin tuck? Why are therapists prescribing it without an instrumental examination to prove that it works? Why has the chin […]

lateral view of head to show oral and pharyngeal phases of swallowing

Speech-Language Pathologist = Deglutologist

Speech-Language Pathologist = Deglutologist by Karen Sheffler, MS, CCC-SLP, BCS-S of SwallowStudy.com Every May the American Speech-Language and Hearing Association (ASHA) celebrates May is Better Hearing and Speech month. ASHA and community raise awareness of the wonderful work that Speech-Language Pathologists (SLPs) and Audiologist do. In addition to working on difficulties in hearing and speech, we need to thank Speech-Language Pathologists for helping infants through geriatrics overcome their language, fluency, voice, cognitive, and swallowing disorders. It is especially […]