Many people with stroke, brain injury, progressive disease, and head/neck cancer have difficulty swallowing. This is an FDA approved treatment that can decrease risk of aspiration and improve the pleasure of eating and drinking.
At a Glance
VitalStim is neuromuscular electrical stimulation that can improve swallowing and facial paresis.
Swallowing- The electrodes are placed on the target muscles, which are then contracted. During the treatment the client works on improving the swallow coordination and strengthening exercises.
VitalStim is used with traditional swallowing techniques, including a home exercise program, safe swallow strategies, postures, environmental modifications, and appropriate texture/consistency analysis.
Face- VitalStim also helps facial droop by re-educating the muscles of the face, again working in conjunction with exercises. This not only improves the motor ability, but also the sensory input."
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