Stuttering is a common childhood condition that can sometimes continue into adulthood.
In fact, many notable people have experienced stuttering throughout the years.
King George VI, for instance, famously spoke with a pronounced stutter.
The father of Queen Elizabeth II struggled to effectively deliver public speeches for many years.
However, he eventually overcame these difficulties with the help of a speech and language therapist.
And so can you.
If you’re experiencing stuttering, the most important thing to know is that there’s help.
A speech therapist for stuttering can help you improve your fluency and overall communication.
In this article, we’ll explore how.
What Is Stuttering?
Stuttering is a communication disorder which disrupts the flow of your speech.
It’s also commonly referred to as “stammering”.
A stutter can present in a variety of ways.
Some people who stutter produce speech that is disrupted by repetitions (li-li-like this).
Others experience speech prolongations (lllike this).
Finally, some stutters cause breaks and stoppages in place of sounds and syllables.
Additionally, some people who stutter experience atypical facial and body movements as they try to speak.
How Old Does Stuttering Start?
Approximately 5% of all children stutter at some point during their development.
Stuttering typically begins between the ages of 2 to 5.
During this period, your child’s speech skills are rapidly developing.
Sometimes, their speech develops faster than their speech control, and a stutter occurs.
Your child’s stutter will likely come and go as they develop, and its severity will vary.
In most cases, stuttering resolves itself once your child’s speech development catches up.
But that’s not always the case, so if your child has a stutter it’s still a good idea to book an appointment for a speech therapy evaluation.
How Many People Stutter?
According to The Stuttering Foundation, more than 80 million people across the world live with a stutter.
This accounts for approximately 1% of the world’s population.
Gender appears to play a role in the prevalence of stuttering.
Men seem to be four times more likely to experience a stutter than women.
You can find people who stutter throughout all realms of society.
In fact, you might be surprised to hear just how many famous people have lived with a stutter throughout the years.
More recent examples include singer Ed Sheeran, actor James Earl Jones, and President Joe Biden.
As you can see, stuttering affects all types of people of all shapes and sizes.
Why Do People Stutter?
Some people mistakenly believe that all stuttering stems from psychological distress or emotional trauma.
In reality, people who don’t stutter are just as likely to experience anxiety or depression than those who do.
Many factors can contribute to the development of a stutter.
It’s most commonly the result of a combination of factors, including genetic and environmental influences, rather than a single factor.
The most common factors are genetics, childhood development, neurophysiology, and family dynamics.
Next, we’ll take a closer look at each of them.
Genetics play a significant role in stuttering.
Approximately 60% of people who stutter have a direct relative who also stutters.
The link between genetics and stuttering has been a topic of research for years.
For instance, a 1983 study by Andrews et al found that people with a first degree relative who stutters are 3 times more likely than the average population risk to also develop a stutter.
Why is this?
Well, some experts think that it has to do with a specific part of the brain that controls the muscle used during speech.
It’s believed that this part of the brain isn’t working effectively in people with a family history of stuttering.
Stuttering often occurs alongside other conditions.
This is especially true during childhood.
Children with certain speech issues, developmental delays, and other conditions are at a greater risk of stuttering.
If you think that an underlying issue is causing your child’s stuttering, bring them in for an assessment at Sol Speech and Speech Therapy today.
Neurophysiology also plays an important role in stuttering.
Neurophysiology refers to the various parts and processes of your nervous system and how well they all function together.
Research indicates that people who stutter often have aspects of their neurophysiology which process speech and language atypically.
Last but not least, family dynamics are an important factor in stutter development.
Children who stutter often deal with high parental expectations or live high stress lifestyles.
That said, if your child stutters, it’s almost certainly not your fault.
Here at Sol Speech And Language Therapy, we’ll assess and treat your child’s stuttering free of judgment.
Does Stuttering Ever Go Away?
As we previously discussed, some children lose their stutter as their speech and language skills develop.
However, this certainly isn’t the case for everyone.
In some cases, stuttering continues into adolescence and adulthood.
In these circumstances, a speech therapist can help to correct the stutter and promote proper speaking techniques.
Does My Child Need Speech Therapy For Stuttering?
If you think that your child might benefit from speech therapy for stuttering, our staff at Sol Speech and Language therapy is ready to help.
The longer your child’s stutter is left alone, the less likely it is that it’ll go away on its own.
As with many childhood speech and language difficulties, early intervention is critical.
We typically recommend that you bring your child in for an assessment if they’re stuttering and not showing much progress as they grow.
Without intervention, your child’s stutter could get worse with age as a result of factors such as bullying or anxiety.
How Can Speech Therapy Help With Stuttering?
At Sol Speech and Language Therapy, our expert speech therapists have plenty of experience helping people who stutter.
A speech therapist can help with both the assessment and provide solutions for stuttering in both children and adults.
The type of therapy used will depend on a variety of factors, such as the severity of the stutter, your age, and your unique strengths and limitations.
Your therapist will begin by focusing on strengthening your fluency.
In general, the longer you’ve stuttered, the longer it’ll take to be corrected through therapy.
But with dedication, you can work to minimize your stutter and improve your overall communication skills.
Book Your Appointment With Sol Speech And Language Therapy Today
Do you live with a stutter that’s negatively affecting your life?
Or are you noticing a consistent stutter in your child that isn’t going away with age?
At Sol Speech and Language Therapy, our team of therapists can help.
Each of our clinics offer a variety of speech therapy programs designed to improve your speech and overall communication skills.
Stuttering can be embarrassing, but it doesn’t have to be a lifelong challenge.
Book your appointment with Sol Speech And Language Therapy today to find out how we can help you transform your voice.
6448 E Hwy 290 Suite E-106,
Austin, TX 78723
Sol Speech & Language Therapy
555 Round Rock W Dr E-221,
Round Rock, TX 78681
Sol Speech & Language Therapy offers personalized skilled intervention to those struggling with their speech and language skills. Services offered include screening, consultation, and comprehensive evaluation. We also provide one-on-one and/or group therapy for speech sound disorders, receptive/expressive language delay/disorder, stuttering/cluttering, accent reduction, and much more.