Sunday, February 26, 2006

Thinking out loud

I've been mulling on my career in-progress. I'm studying speech-language pathology and have a background in adult counseling. I sought out this new direction since I'm both very interested in language and how it knocks around in our noggins, and have some knowledge and experience in how to help people on a deeper level. Speech therapy seems like a good way to do all that stuff. Cool.

But wait, there's this other thing called research. That sounds fun too. I've been getting some exposure to neuroimaging and language by volunteering in one of my professor's labs. Really cool stuff. Hmmm, maybe a Ph.D. would be right up my alley. But what the hell would I do with it. I don't think I want to just research and teach. I want to be a clinician. And what about all that counseling stuff that got me going this direction in the first place? How do I put all of this together?

This has me wondering...what type of psychotherapeutic tools exist for people who have language disorders, from stroke or head injuries or whatever. What if they're depressed after a profound, life-changing neurologic event, but they have no way to sort through it other than in their own head, and even that's not working right. What if they could benefit from some form of psychotherapy, if there was just a way to do therapy with someone who's language is impaired. Therapy may have to look totally different, depending on the severity of the impairment. Have there been studies done to look at the correlation of depression and language deficiencies, neurologically and otherwise? Is there anyone out there who's doing this kind of work as a clinician? Probably...maybe...I really don't know. There are support groups for people with these kinds of language problems, and that's really helpful for a lot of people, but maybe others would benefit from individual counseling that works both on their language skills and their emotional/behavioral health.

I need to do a little digging and see what's out there along these lines. And think about it a lot more.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Uh-oh, you're scaring me. :)
Seriously, when Britta was in the hospital I heard the quote "ill health/hospitalization does not have to equal depression." My thought was "yeah, right." I'd like to know if there is anyone out there suffering from poor health or hospitalized who is not depressed. Is it possible?