Thanks to Lauren Daly, Speech and Language Therapist at Spectrum Health for writing the following blog on stuttering in Adults.
Even the King can Stutter
In the film “The King’s Speech,” Colin Firth plays King George VI of Britain, but in order to address his subjects, the new king had to overcome a major obstacle: his stutter. By portraying the difficulties the king faced in confronting his speech disorder, the film has brought an awareness to a topic that is often misunderstood or unrecognised by the public.
Public awareness is crucially important for individuals who stutter or have any other type of Speech and Language difficulties. Public awareness means that individuals who stutter may not have to explain themselves every time they open their mouth to speak. In the film “The King’s Speech” King George inspires individuals that you are not alone and that you can seek help and support.
Top 10 tips for adults who stutter.
- Say your word easily, gently and smoothly without force. Words are made up of sounds Start the sounds of words at a slow, easy smooth rate. This is called easy onset.
- Make a habit of always talking slowly-take your time.
- Stutter openly and do not try to hide the fact that you stutter.
- Identify and eliminate any unusual gestures, facial consortions or body movements which you may have adopted.
- Maintain eye contact, reduce any feelings of shame or embarrassment.
- Always keep moving forward as you speak. Some people who stutter have a habit of repeating the word or sound they had difficulty with.
- Try to talk with inflection and melody in a firm voice,
- Pay attention to the fluent speech you have.
- Try to talk as much as you can.
- Remember that everyone has the right to be heard.
What can be done to help?
A Speech and Language Therapist is a trained professional who can offer support and treatment for adults who stutter. The Speech and Language Therapist will perform an assessment to evaluate the speech problem properly. They will also speak at length to the person to understand the impact the stammer/stutter has had on this person’s life (social, academic, occupational and confidence) and what steps the client would like to take to make gradual changes so they can speak more confidently