About Speech, Swallowing, & Myofunctional Therapy
The goal of therapy is to set you or your child up for success inside and outside the session. The best therapy for speech is speaking. The best therapy for the swallow is swallowing. The best therapy for resting posture, is you guessed it, resting posture. Therapy will often look like reading, conversation, chewing, and eating! We will need to do a few other tasks along the way, and I will pull out many tools to help you get there. I will try to keep therapy as functional as possible; this is how we make real change, also making your home program easier to incorporate into your busy life.
We always work just one little step ahead, moving you closer and closer to achieving your best. Therapy is typically 45-minute weekly sessions covering all or most goal areas. Each week in therapy, you should feel challenged but fully supported. As you progress in therapy, we will fade treatment, gradually reducing the frequency of sessions.
Meet our Speech Therapist
What are people saying about Christina?
"I learned more from Ms. Christina about my child's potential diagnosis than all 3 years he's been in speech therapy. She's so well versed in her field. She came well recommended by my neighbors!!!"
"Christina is absolutely amazing!! We live relatively far away and it's been a pleasure to make the trip to see her. She has phenomenal depth of experience/understanding and the best demeanor to work with."
"Very thorough evaluation with good explanations. She was professional and nice, and was very careful about COVID precautions."
"We worked with Christina Semonick for my 14 year old daughter who had many physical issues with regard to her mouth and eating. I couldn’t say enough good things about her. She was professional, prompt, knowledgeable, kind, funny and a very nice person. She really was a perfect fit for us. Best speech therapist I have come across for sure!"
I often say that speech-language pathology chose me! Some of my earliest childhood memories are playing "speech teacher" with my older sister. She is Autistic and is minimally verbal; it has been wonderful to see her embrace the fantastic advances in assistive technology and watch her find her voice! My father had Parkinson's disease. I witnessed as the disease progressed and impacted his voice and swallow and, in turn, his quality of life.
I grew up in northern Canada and have had my share of ice and snow! In 2015, my wonderful partner, Marc, asked if I would like to leave the cold behind. It was a very quick, YES! We were off to the Golden State! We absolutely our new home state (and the lack of snow). This really is an amazing place to live!
I graduated from the University of Alberta in Edmonton, Canada, in 2012 with an M.S. in Speech-Language Pathology. I hold a certificate of clinical competence (CCC-SLP) from the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA). I am licensed by the state of California to practice Speech-Language Pathology. I have taken multiple courses since graduation to advance my clinical knowledge. I'm thrilled to announce that I am currently working on my clinical doctorate at Northwestern.
Rehabilitation from injury and neurodegenerative disease was the passion that brought me to this wonderful profession, but I have been fortunate enough to work in a variety of settings. My experiences from education, home health, and inpatient care have afforded me with a strong foundation in both educational and medical speech-language pathology.
Now an experienced clinician, I founded Clarity Speech Therapy to provide high-quality, specialized services where I can tailor the goals and the therapeutic experience to individual clients and families. I hope to break down the barriers to therapy. The mission is to educate clients and their families so that they can empower themselves to achieve their goals for clear communication and efficient swallowing to improve their quality of life.
I am a member of multiple professional organizations dedicated to client care and the advancement of science-based medicine.
- American Academy of Craniofacial Pain
- American Academy of Orofacial Pain
- American Academy of Physiological Medicine and Dentistry
- American Speech-Language Hearing Foundation
- Applied Academy of Myofunctional Sciences
- California Speech-Language Hearing Foundation
- Dysphagia Research Society
- International Association of Orofacial Myology
- International Consortium of Oral Ankylofrenula Professionals
- World Sleep Society
I am dedicated to ongoing professional development. Most of my time away from the clinic setting is spent either taking additional training, mentoring, or teaching. I previously worked as a lecturer: teaching coursework in communication sciences and disorders three terms per year at the University of Alberta. I am now working on my passion-project, developing a training program for Speech-Language Pathologists to learn more about orofacial myofunctional disorders. Look out for this in future!
I am devoted to sharing research and best practice. I am proud to be an advisor to the American Sleep Apnea Association. Select recent speaking engagements have included:
- Upcoming: May 2023: American Academy of Orofacial Pain
- April 2022: Local county dental society: Assessment of orofacial myofunctional disorders 101.
- July 2021: Local speech pathology clinic: Chew on this! Oral preparation for swallowing and healthy function.
- March & April 2021: San Francisco State University: Influence of the oral mechanism on speech sound production.
- August 2020: Academy of Applied Myofunctional Sciences Congress 2020: Dysphagia & Sleep: What myofunctional therapists can learn from our dysphagia colleagues.
- January 2020: Local school district: Orofacial myofunctional therapy for the school speech-language pathologist.
- September 2019: Awake Together Summit: Panel on multidisciplinary treatment of sleep apnea
- Ongoing community outreach to educate local dental and speech therapy clinics e.g., Introduction to orofacial myofunctional therapy: How orofacial structure and swallow can impact sleep breathing.
Communication is indeed part of who we are! Swallowing is taken for granted in our culture and social lives! I am truly blessed that my career allows me to improve the lives of others every day!
I can't wait to start working with you!
Select professional development experiences
Would you define yourself as great with technology? Interested in research and myofunctional disorders? Check out the openings below. If you’re the right fit, we’ll design a position that matches with what makes you exceptional. Persons from all genders, races, religions, and abilities are actively encouraged to apply.
- Speech-Language Pathologists (CFY welcome): Are you interested in swallowing, oral function, and speech sound disorders? Is medical SLP is your passion but you would prefer to have the flexibility of private practice? This may be the role for you.
- Communication Sciences and Disorders Interns (no university placements, supplemental hours only): Are you an enrolled in communication sciences and disorders program and are looking for more experience? Tasks may vary from observation, formatting presentations, sourcing research, assisting with research projects or everything in between!