VitalStim®

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VitalStim® is the FDA approved treatment method for feeding and swallowing therapy. It uses neuromuscular electric stimulation to establish muscle-nerve memory patterns to help strengthen the muscles used for chewing, food management, lip closure, tongue movement, and swallowing. While training the muscles for strength, endurance and coordination, it helps start an improvement cycle. The muscles are strengthened while the child is feeding so that he or she is able to and wants to eat more. The result is a more normal swallow and a new-found enjoyment of eating.

Typical candidates for VitalStim® therapy are patients who exhibit difficulty with spilling food and saliva from their mouth, managing foods, and swallowing. Some of these children are fed using NG-tube, G-tube, or GJ-tubes. Others are being fed altered diets using purees, or thickened liquids. Parents and caregivers who notice that their child has difficulty with lip closure, chewing, management of food or saliva in their mouth, keeping their tongue in the mouth, swallowing, or holding food between the cheeks and gums may be interested in seeking VitalStim® for their child. Children with weak oral and facial muscles or who have had bouts of pneumonia could be candidates for the therapy. If your child gags, sneezes, or coughs often while eating, or often has watery eyes or a runny nose when eating, feeding therapy including Vital Stim could be an option for him/her.

VitalStim® is a non-invasive, painless treatment for dysphagia, and can only be provided by certified Occupational or Speech Therapists. With 53 VitalStim® certified therapists; THERAPY 2000 is committed to the best possible care for your child. If you are interested in learning more about VitalStim® therapy please feel free to contact us.