Stammering also called stuttering is a person’s inability to speak a word or letter with a flow. It is an involuntary interruption in speech encountered while speaking words beginning with or sound like b, d, g, k, p and t. It is accompanied by red face, blinking of eyes and tremor of jaws while speaking. Although most common among small children between 3 to 7 years of age, it is also likely to persist in 1 out of 100 adults if not taken care of. Although stammering is a physical condition, there is no proper medication for stammering. The best way to overcome is through speech therapy. Person or children suffering from stammering could also develop some psychological conditions such as feeling ashamed and embarrassed; in those cases it is best to boost confidence by providing a relaxed environment without being judgmental. In very extremes cases, intense psychological therapy is needed. There are also a lot of physical condition that accompanies stammering such as jaw ache, shortness of breath and tiredness due to excess workload on mind and body. Generally, these physical conditions are not treated specifically but it is always important to maintain a healthy and protein rich diet to provide ample energy to the mind and body.
Stammering is very common among young children between 3 to 7 years and it also goes away with age without treatment. However, in case of elongated and prolonged stammering especially during teenage requires proper care and treatment. A speech and language therapist (SLT) is the best person to treat stammering. Though the whole treatment is based on physical exercise and everyday therapy that can be done at home, it is advisable to consult a therapist before starting the procedure. The reason being the different types of stammering and different therapy that is effective for that particular stammering.
A good speech therapist will recommend you to concentrate both on physical exercises for strengthening the organs such as tongue, lips, jaw and lungs along with speech therapy. One of the best way to overcome stammering is to provide the person a relax and friendly environment where he/she doesn’t feel hesitated to speak. Boosting confidence is also very effective in overcoming psychological conditions related to stammering such as frustration, embarrassment and shame. Focusing on controlled breathing also helps in treating stammering. Some effective speech therapy includes speaking slowly and calmly, repeating the words where you stammer and the vowels A, E, I, O, U and singing. Last but not the least is to add nutrition to your diet especially those minerals that boost mental alertness.
Although it is very common among young children, the treatment is only for those children who are not overcoming it even after 10 years. In some cases, when the stammering is more than normal for small children, it is advisable to consult a speech therapist whether or not the child needs treatment. The treatment is generally done after 7 or 8 years which can last for a few months or can go up to a couple of years and more.
All those children who are below age 6 don’t require the treatment for stammering as it is also a part of child’s development. Similar to the process of crawling before walking, almost every child has stammering in the initial stage before developing proper speech. So it is not advisable to treat small children for stammering.
As the treatment is based on therapy and doesn’t include any medication, there are no possible side effects of the treatment. However, if the psychological therapy is not yielding result over a long period of time it can further affect the mental health in a negative way.
Stammering is not a chronic disease but it can show slightest of possible occurrence in negligible amount in your speech. As for the post treatment guidelines, there is none except to continue with the therapy everyday and reducing it slowly rather than ending abruptly. Another important point to keep in mind is that it is not a disease but a condition, so practicing speech therapy often even after overcoming stammering is also recommended by many practitioners.
the treatment of stammering is a slow and gradual process. Minor stammering or stuttering can be treated in a couple of months through speech therapy. However, major stammering requires a lot more time to be treated completely. The speech therapy along with psychological therapy can start from 3 months and can last up to a year or two and even more.
the price of the treatment in India varies greatly depending on the city. In small cities the consultation starts at INR 200 per visit as compared to metropolitan cities where the consultation stats at INR 500. Some of the leading speech specialist can charge a whopping INR 2000 per visit. The Indian government also has free speech therapies clinic for minorities and backward classes.
The results of the treatment are mostly permanent. However, in negligible cases it shows the tendency of coming back which can be treated by continuing the therapy. If the therapy is effective and is continued for some time even after overcoming stammering, the chances of this disorder coming back is nearly impossible.
As for alternatives, there is none better than motivational courses. However, there are many people who prefer going under the knife for tongue surgery in order to treat stammering. Other non surgical alternatives for stammering include acupuncture, chiropratic treatment and electroshock.
Speech therapy is a very specific field of medicine where the therapists deal with speech disorders in children and adults, which may be a result of certain mental or personality disorders. These doctors can be essential when it comes to teaching a child how to articulate better and also to be more expressive of his/her feelings. Here is a look at a few of the benefits of a speech therapist in the life of a child suffering from speech impairment.
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Stammering or stuttering is a type of speech impairment where sounds or syllables are repeated involuntarily or there are unintended gaps in between words when the person is unable to make the desired sound. People develop stutters due to genetic flaws, motor functioning defects, coordination problems or due to psychological stressors. The condition can result in anxiety, depression and withdrawal from verbal communication.
How does homeopathy help?
A stutter can be practiced away or corrected by speech therapy but there is no specific medicine that can be used to cure stammering. Homeopathic medicines can provide relief from the symptoms by fixing flawed nervous functions, improve motor coordination and modify the vocal apparatus. Different homeopathic treatments can be used depending on the nature of the condition.
1. Foods rich in vitamin B6 like nuts, fish, bananas and chicken should be consumed regularly by children who have a stutter to help with motor functions.
2. Adults should avoid caffeine, tobacco and other recreational drugs as they cause hyper-stimulation of the nervous system.
3. Stramonium(jimsonweed) can be used when the stammering is violent and the person distorts his facial muscles heavily in order to be able to speak.
4. Lychopodium (clubmoss) can be useful for stammering as well as depression, memory weakness and sleep problems. This is especially helpful if the patient struggles with the last few words of a sentence.
5. Spigelia is beneficial for a mild stutter at the beginning of a sentence, often followed by undisturbed speech.
6. Causticum is prescribed when emotional excitability causes stammering, twitching of the facial muscles or problems in the vocal chords.
7. Staphysagria can aid in reducing social anxiety which often causes stammering i.e. the stammer only appears while interacting with strangers or authority figures.
8. Nux vomica (strychnine) is the medicine to use when stammering is a result of extreme stress or over work.
9. Fright or shock often causes speechlessness or stammering. Aconite can provide immediate relief in such cases.
10. Lachesis is an effective homeopathic medicine when the patient stutters over specific letters or syllables.
11. Gelsemium is used to treat stuttering after severe viral infections when the patient complains of a heavy tongue and lack of general coordination.
What is stuttering?
Stuttering affects the fluency of speech. It begins during childhood and, in some cases, lasts throughout life. The disorder is characterized by disruptions in the production of speech sounds, also called" disfluencies" most people produce brief disfluencies from time to time. For instance, some words are repeated and others are preceded by" um" or" uh" disfluencies are not necessarily a problem; however, they can impede communication when a person produces too many of them.
Some examples of stuttering include:
*" w- w- w- where are you going" (part-word repetition: the person is having difficulty moving from the" w" in" where" to the remaining sounds in the word. On the fourth attempt, he successfully completes the word.)
*" ssss ave me a seat" (sound prolongation: the person is having difficulty moving from the" s" in" save" to the remaining sounds in the word. He continues to say the" s" sound until he is able to complete the word.)
*" i'll meet you - um um you know like - around six o'clock" (a series of interjections: the person expects to have difficulty smoothly joining the word" you" with the word" around" in response to the anticipated difficulty, he produces several interjections until he is able to say the word" around" smoothly.)
What treatments are available for stuttering?
Most treatment programs for people who stutter are" behavioral" they are designed to teach the person specific skills or behaviors that lead to improved oral communication. For instance, many slps teach people who stutter to control and/or monitor the rate at which they speak. In addition, people may learn to start saying words in a slightly slower and less physically tense manner. They may also learn to control or monitor their breathing. When learning to control speech rate, people often begin by practicing smooth, fluent speech at rates that are much slower than typical speech, using short phrases and sentences. Over time, people learn to produce smooth speech at faster rates, in longer sentences, and in more challenging situations until speech sounds both fluent and natural" follow-up" or" maintenance" sessions are often necessary after completion of formal intervention to prevent relapse.
Audiology deals in identifying and evaluating hearing disorders that are associated with adults, children or infants. The audiology department at genesis-neurogen diagnostic evaluations to people having speech, hearing, language and communication difficulties.