A fluency disorder can be one of the most frustrating things to deal with.
If you have a stutter, you know what you’re trying to say. And you know how to say it. But you have trouble actually saying it.
Meanwhile, if you have a cluttering disorder, your speech comes out too quickly, bunched together, and poorly organized in a way that’s difficult to understand.
Either way, these disorders make communication difficult.
We can help.
Here at Voz Speech Therapy, we offer speech therapy treatments for children and adults with fluency disorders like stuttering and cluttering.
Read on below to find out more about these disorders, including their characteristics and how speech therapy can help.
What Is Stuttering?
If you have a stutter, it affects your natural speech patterns. It can cause you to repeat sounds, elongate them, or have significant interruptions between the sounds you make. In some cases, can be a combination of each of these things.
Depending on the type of stutter you have, it may manifest in one or more of the following ways:
- Trouble starting to speak
- Creating unnatural sounding pauses in between sounds – for example, I’d… li…ke a cof…fee
- Repeating sounds – for example, I’d lik-k-k-k-k-e a-a-a-a co-co-co-coffee
- Elongating certain sounds – for example, I’d liiiiiiiike a coooooooffeeeeeee
- Social anxiety or anxiety around speaking
- Facial tics
- Lip tremors
- Quick or jerky head movements
- Quick eye blinking
However, toddlers just generally don’t speak properly because they’re still learning. So how can you tell if your child has a stutter? Beyond the above signs, your child may:
- Not talk very much
- Have low self-esteem
- Seem like they want to talk, but do not have any words come out
- Show tension in their face
- Spend most of their time by themselves
- Avoid saying certain words
Speech Therapy For Adults Who Stutter
In most cases, adults and older children who stutter aren’t able to eliminate it entirely. This is why early intervention speech therapy treatment is so important when it comes to dealing with speech and language disorders. However, we can still help.
While the symptoms of a stutter themselves can be frustrating, one of the biggest issues is actually the anxiety that comes with it. Because while speech therapy can help you or your child manage your stutter, the anxiety that comes with it can make it far worse.
Speech therapy for adults who stutter can teach you to become a more confident communicator, helping you to use your voice and work around your stutter.
A stutter can be frustrating to deal with, but we can help. Book your appointment today with Voz Speech Therapy to find out how.
Speech Therapy For Toddlers Who Stutter
On the other hand, we take a different approach to toddlers who stutter.
Most children who are learning how to speak will stutter occasionally, and it’s not generally cause for concern. However, there are a few signs that you should bring your child in for a speech therapy assessment. These include:
- Stuttering for 6 months or longer
- Developing a stutter that seems to get progressively worse
- Having a family history of stuttering
- Showing facial tics, tongue clicks, tension in their jaw, or leg jerks
Because children learn an incredible amount of speech and language skills during the first three years of their lives, speech therapy for toddlers who stutter tends to be a lot more effective. The younger your child is, the less time they’ve had to solidify the bad habits around coping with their stutter.
So if you suspect your child has a stutter, it’s a good idea to bring them in for a speech therapy assessment as soon as possible to determine if it is normal developmental stuttering or a more chronic issue.
Book your appointment today with Voz Speech Therapy to find out more.
What Is Cluttering?
Cluttering is another type of fluency disorder, but it manifests itself quite a bit differently than stuttering.
With cluttering, your speech often comes out quickly, to the point of being incomprehensible, and feels disorganized. Listening to somebody with a cluttering disorder often sounds like a lot of breaks and pauses within a normal flow of speech, as well as words and sounds that come out so quickly as to seem like a jumbled mess.
Some of the common signs of cluttering include:
- Collapsing sounds together – for example, “I’dlikoffese” instead of “I’d like a coffee, please“
- Conversational meandering – for example, “I’d like, uh, I want, um, I’m tired and I want, I need to wake up so uh can I have a coffee?“
- Removing the endings of words – for example, “I’d like a coffeese” instead of “I’d like a coffee, please“
- Frequently revising or changing what they’re saying mid-sentence
- Frequent and atypical pausing within a sentence
Unlike with stuttering, those who clutter don’t always realize they’re doing it. As a result, they may be less likely to seek help, and they may actually be unaware that others have difficulty understanding them.
Cluttering can occur with other speech and language issues as well, which means the following may also include speech therapy for cluttering:
So what causes cluttering? The prevailing theory behind it is that a person who clutters thinks and speaks at a rate that’s too quick for their systems to handle. That’s why their speech comes out the way it does.
Speech Therapy For Children & Adults Who Clutter
Speech therapy treatments for cluttering tend to be the same regardless of age.
A key approach to treating cluttering is to slow down the rate of your speech. This is more complicated than it sounds because if it was just a matter of slowing down while you talk, you wouldn’t need a speech therapist at all. Just telling somebody to slow down when they speak might help in an individual circumstance, but it doesn’t do much from a long-term perspective.
This is especially true when dealing with emotional or exciting topics, as cluttering tends to increase in these situations.
Speech therapists have a few different tactics to help you slow down your speech, and none of them involve just nagging you just slow down.
Your speech therapist will also work with you to better organize your thoughts and improve your articulation. Cluttering is not an articulation disorder, but there is some overlap between treatment for cluttering and speech therapy treatments for articulation disorders.
Can Cluttering & Stuttering Happen Together?
Yes, they can. In fact, this is part of the reason why cluttering disorder was not recognized until relatively recently. Those who clutter and stutter were considered just to have a particularly troublesome stutter, and those who cluttered without stuttering were just considered to be fast talkers.
If you’re not sure, we can do a speech therapy evaluation to help you understand your current condition. But whether you stutter, clutter, or both, we can still help.
Book Your Appointment With Voz Speech Therapy Today
If you or your child is dealing with a fluency disorder like cluttering or stuttering, we can help.
Book your appointment today with Voz Speech Therapy to speak with one of our licensed speech therapists.
Will work with you to uncover the cause of your fluency issues, and put together a treatment plan designed to address them.
Book your appointment with Voz Speech Therapy today.