Design of a novel magnetoencephalograph-compatible tracking system for monitoring speech-related orofacial events
Individuals with speech problems face difficulties such as anxiety, poor socialization and poor literacy. Key to effective intervention and therapy is a better understanding of the brain activity associated with speech. Magnetoencephalography (MEG) is a new brain-imaging technology that, for the first time, allows researchers to monitor the fast-changing brain activity involved with speech. The challenge in using MEG for speech analysis is that existing speech-tracking systems introduce too much magnetic interference. The objective of this study is to design an MEG-compatible system that tracks events such as facial muscle activity, productions of sound, and movements of the face, lips, tongue and jaw during speech. The tracking system, being an integral part of a larger study on brain activity during speech, will contribute to improving speech therapy at SickKids and other hospitals in Ontario.