We all have someone who comes to mind who stutters. Whether it be a family member, friend or even a celebrity.
Stuttering is a disorder that causes disruption to the rhythm and flow of an individual’s speech. It can impact both children and adults. Stuttering usually begins in early childhood at approximately the age of three years old and can present gradually or suddenly. Not all children who present with a stutter will continue to stutter throughout their lives.
Early assessment is crucial in order to diagnose and determine an effective intervention path. Southern Highlands Speech Pathology provides the Lidcombe Program of Early Stuttering as this is the strongest evidence-based intervention to support and benefit school age children who stutter. The program aims to train parents to incorporate therapy into their day to day activities.
Red flags for stuttering:
- Your child has been stuttering for more than three months
- Your family has a history of stuttering
- Your child’s stutter is becoming progressively noticeable to unfamiliar listeners
- Your child is avoiding talking
The most common characteristics of stuttering include:
- Repetition of a sound e.g. c-c-c-cat
- Repetition of a syllable e.g. be-be-be-because
- Repetition of a word e.g. can-can-can
- Repetition of a phrase e.g. I would-I would-I would
- Prolongations - when a consonant or vowel sound is extended or stretched in a word e.g. “Caaaaaan I please go”.
- Blocking - when a sound is unable to be produced due to a stoppage of airflow. It may present where there is a short period of silence or struggle to produce the word.
If you have any questions regarding your child’s current stuttering or communication development please contact our clinic on 4862 5063 or email us at email@example.com
- Alexandra Macrae is a speech pathologist.