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Many modifications can be made to your child's environment which can lead to fluent speech. This includes changes to the parents' speech patterns which facilitates fluent speech in young children. Additional supports may also reduce stuttering in young children, such as strengthening language skills or modifying certain speech characteristics, such as rate of speech.
The Lidcombe Program is an evidence-based treatment for preschool-age children who are stuttering. Therapy is carried out by a parent in the home environment under the guidance of a Speech-Language Pathologist (SLP). The SLP coaches the parent on how to carry out the therapy in the safe and appropriate way. Changes and adjustments are made to therapy at weekly visits, based on observed changes in the child’s speech. Once the child no longer exhibits stuttering, the Program shifts to ensuring that progress is maintained over a long period of time. The parent assumes greater responsibility during this time, monitoring for and responding to signs of relapse. Clinic visits are shorter in duration and are scheduled at gradually longer time intervals, provided the child remains free of stuttering. The therapy is carefully withdrawn over the span of about one year. The Lidcombe Program is suited to some school-age children who stutter.
Older children can learn how to improve their speech fluency by learning fluency modification and fluency shaping techniques. Children and adolescents can determine which "fluency tools" work best for them as they work on forward-moving speech. This age group also benefits from learning how to cope with the anxiety that stuttering can cause, as well as how to advocate for their unique style of speaking. Older children will examine how the speech is produced and how their pattern of stuttering affects speech production and how the pattern can be changed.
Adults can also learn fluency modification and shaping strategies. Because adults are more self-aware of their disfluent patterns, they learn how to produce speaking patterns that counter the stuttering behaviors. Adult therapy also examines the approach-avoidance paradigm that goes with the behavior of stuttering. This can help the person who stutters accept the possibility of a stuttering moment which ultimately reduces the severity of the stutter.
SpeechEasy® is an electronic stuttering inhibiting device that looks like and is worn like a hearing aid. It delivers Altered Auditory Feedback (AAF): a combination of Delayed Auditory Feedback and Frequency Altered Feedback. The SpeechEasy® stuttering inhibiting device can immediately reduce the frequency and severity of stuttering with minimal effort. Some people are more responsive to AAF than others. An assessment allows you to try a stuttering inhibiting device and to evaluate, together with the Speech-Language Pathologist, its effects on your stuttering, before investing in a stuttering inhibiting device. Find out how we can help. Contact us now.
SpeechEasy® is suitable/intended for older adolescents and adults, and can be considered for some older school-age children. It is possible for some children to benefit from wearing a SpeechEasy® device; however, it should not be the first treatment to be tried. The child’s maturity, responsibility, and motivation are considered when assessing suitability. Speech therapy history is another important consideration. A child who is already working with a Speech-Language Pathologist can be supported in using the device to derive the most benefit.
Speak to us about your concerns with your stuttering or that of your child. We can discuss different therapy options available and answer any questions that you have. Call us at 414-666-1530.
Are you interested in hearing how the SpeechEasy® anti-stuttering device has worked for our clients. Check here to listen to clients that use the device.