While roughly 5% of children will develop a stutter, only 1% will maintain that stutter for a prolonged period of time.
That means that while the majority of children will stop stuttering at a young age, it’s not altogether unusual to find stuttering in adults.
Stuttering makes communication difficult and for some, can really affect their quality of life.
Read on to learn more about stuttering in adults and how to seek treatment.
What Causes Stuttering?
Stuttering is not one single speech impediment. For some, stuttering causes the repetition of words or parts of words. For others, it may involve long, involuntary pauses during speech or the drawing out of certain vowel sounds.
The majority of adults who experience stuttering have likely stuttered since childhood. It is unclear what causes stuttering, although there are some theories.
It does appear that the likelihood of stuttering is enhanced by genetics. If a parent or sibling stutters, it is more likely that you will, too. Stuttering can also indicate abnormalities in motor control.
Neurogenic stuttering results from certain disruptions of the neurological functions. This can be brought on by strokes, traumatic brain injuries, and more.
Stuttering may increase in times of stress. However, there is little evidence that stuttering stems from severe or prolonged emotional stress. It is highly unusual for children or adults to develop a stutter after experiencing emotional trauma.
Treating Stuttering in Adults
When stuttering becomes inhibitive of communication, it becomes frustrating. Let’s look at some of the ways you can treat stuttering as an adult.
Practice speaking in a slow, deliberate way while at home. Read aloud from a book and find the pace that helps you to reduce your stuttering.
Sometimes, we try to rush through our words when they don’t seem to want to come out. However, when you have a stutter, speaking quickly can make it harder to get past those stuck points.
Identify Trigger Words
Have you ever noticed that certain words never want to come out on the first try? While the reason may not be clear, some words have a tendency to trigger your stutter.
As you identify trigger words, consider one of two approaches. Practice those words at home and see if you can use them if you pronounce them slowly. Alternatively, look for synonyms you can replace those words within your speech!
Adults who struggle with stuttering may need more than a few at-home techniques. Chances are, you’ve probably tried to combat your stuttering on your own.
If this is the case, consider signing up for an intensive stuttering treatment program that does work to help adults.
Learn to Speak Freely
Though stuttering in adults is less common than stuttering in children, tons of adults still have difficulty speaking freely. With the help of a treatment program and other techniques, you can reduce your stuttering and speak with ease.
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