Have you heard of these things called Throat Scopes? No? Well then, my friend — prepare to be wowed! Yes, wowed by something that you use to look in someone’s mouth. As SLPs, we tend to appreciate these innovations more than others, that is why throat scopes are something I just couldn’t wait to share.
How many times have you done oral mech exam? 20, 50, 100, maybe more?! Then you know the drill: pop in the tongue depressor, hope that the battery in the light you have been using hasn’t died, and if it still works, take a look around. Not a big deal, but it is a necessary step in the screening and eval process. Well, this step just got a whole lot cooler! Throat Scopes are light up, clear tongue depressors that allows you a much better view of the oral cavity without testing your ability to juggle a flashlight and depressor while not shining the light in your student’s eyes as well.
Here is the Throat Scope. It kind of looks like a speechie light saber. You can use your SLP Jedi powers and do a killer oral mech exam.
You should be doing an oral mech each time your screening/evals!
Yup, each time. You wouldn’t believe how many students I have had that ended up having an physical reason for their speech that would have gone ( or had gone ) overlooked! If I hadn’t taken the few minutes to do a quick look around I would have missed tongue ties, submucousal clefts, huge adenoids, crazy high arches palates, etc. These issues and more had contributing factors that needed outside attention in order for those kids to make progress.
How it works
Wondering how to use throat scopes? Super simple. You just pop on a new blade aka clear tongue despressor, and it automatically lights up. I liked not having to hold down a button while using it. This also means that you don’t have to worry about not turning it off and running down the battery ( like I have done with all mini lights and secret message decoder lights from Super Duper ).
The light is nice and bright so you can really see everything. This is such a step up from trying to mange the old wooden tongue depressors and flashlight combo. A total upgrade. Another win for Throat Scope, they don’t break the bank! You can get the light and 100 replacement blades, because you are only using one per kid of course, for $45! That is pretty darn good if you ask me. Yes, they might be a big more than the wooden tongue depressors but think of 1) how many oral exam you really do in a year and 2) how much more efficient these are.