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Stammering - Essay Example

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Summary
Introduction Stammering is a speech disorder characterized by repetition and prolongation of sounds, syllables or words, resulting to interruption of normal speech flow. The speech interruption process is involuntary and the affected person could make lengthy pauses in the course of his or her speech due to the inability to produce sounds of certain syllables…
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Stammering

Download file to see previous pages... This paper examines the causes, symptoms, effects of stammering and methods of treating and managing the condition. Causes of stammer Researchers have studied stammering for a long period but a lot of information about the disorder remains relatively unknown. However, research studies indicate that the condition is caused by a combination of several factors, including developmental and environmental factors. From these contributing factors, the causes of the disorder are classified into two groups namely developmental and acquired. The beginning of developmental stammering is during early childhood and it progresses to the adulthood. Normally 20 percent of children are affected by developmental stammering from the age of about two and half months. During this age, most children are learning about speech and language skills (Bogue, 2005). Developmental stammering is the most common type and it is normally characterized by repetition of syllable or words. These signs are accompanied by other secondary symptoms including observable physical tensions while speaking. As the child develops into adulthood, he or she may start avoiding people or situations that require verbal communication. However, many young children are not cognizant about their speech disruptions. Children who develop the condition early may experience various patterns of stammering. In most situations, the speech disruption is in two episodes, occurring in sequences of stammering followed by periods of relative speech fluency (Bogue, 2005). Developmental stammering is easy to manage and most patients recover from the condition. However, in other situations, the affected children encounter much more difficulties while speaking as stuttering develops into an advanced stage. In such children, the initial relaxed stammering develops into a more tense and repetitive speech disruption accompanied by pauses and speech prolongations (Bogue, 2005). According to Lewis (1902), the development of stammering in children could be influenced by environmental factors such as parenting of the affected child. Exerting intense pressure on the affected child in order to acquire normal speech increases development of stammering, because it undermines the confidence of the child (SFA, 2000). In addition, unregulated speech correction techniques applied by guardians make the affected child to become more anxious and fearful, which are some of the factors that accelerate the development of more chronic stammering (SFA, 2000). As the child grows older, secondary stammering symptoms become evident. These include avoiding social contact and situation requiring verbal communication, rapid blinking of the eyes and trembling of lips. Other behavioral symptoms that develop after the child becomes cognizant of stammering condition include phobia of sounds, people and situations that involve talking. The secondary reactions to stammering become more evident in adolescence and early adulthood causing a lot of humiliation, shame and disappointment to the affected persons. In rare situations, adults with normal speech ability acquire language impairments, which lead to stammering (Lewis, 1902). According to NIDCD (2007), acquired stammering sometimes occur from neurological impairment, arising from medical conditions such as stroke, injury or trauma on the head, brain tumors and abuse of certain drugs. Acquired ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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