Supporting Your Child Who Stutters

child working on stutter in speech therapy

Stuttering is a communication disorder that is characterized by disfluent speech with tension. Children who stutter often describe their speech as feeling “stuck”. As parents, it can be difficult to see your child struggling to “get their words out” to communicate with those around them. Here are some tips to make sure your child who stutters feels supported and confident in their communication. 

child working on stuttering with speech therapist

Educate yourself about stuttering: It is important to educate yourself about stuttering in order to best support your child in their fluency journey. Stuttering can result in feelings of isolation and decreased self-confidence, so it is crucial that your child knows you are in their corner. By understanding stuttering as much as possible, you can create open discourse surrounding speech fluency within your home.

The American Speech-Language-Hearing organization (ASHA), the National Stuttering Association, and the Stuttering Foundation of America all provide evidence-based information about stuttering at their websites linked below. 

Connect your child with peers who stutter: Another way to decrease feelings of isolation surrounding stuttering is to get your child involved in a social group for kids who stutter. There are in-person and virtual support groups which work to empower people who stutter and their families. Here are some ways to get connected!

  • FRIENDS (www.friendswhostutter.org) has a virtual group for kiddos aged 6-11 who stutter. The group focuses on building friendships and having fun! 
  • Camps: There are several day camps and sleepaway camps for children who stutter to build confidence, improve communication, and make friends. Camp Say (www.campsay.org) is just one example of a summer camp focused on empowering children who stutter. 
  • Introduce your child to podcasts created by people who stutter. StutterTalk (www.stuttertalk.com) is a great resource for older kids who want to learn more about stuttering. 

Enroll your child in skilled speech therapy services: Fluency therapy with a speech-language pathologist (SLP) will provide your child with the tools to promote smooth speech, build their confidence about speaking, and increase their education about stuttering. Your SLP can also provide parent training about specific ways to support your child at home and at school. Contact our team at the Clubhouse today to get your child enrolled in high quality speech-language therapy!

Following these tips will ensure your child knows they are not alone in their speech fluency journey. These resources will allow you to demonstrate to your child that you are knowledgeable about stuttering and that you are actively working to support them. A speech-language pathologist at the Clubhouse can provide you with additional tools to best support your child’s effective communication. Get your child the support that will build their self-confidence and promote smooth speech today!

 

Written by Erin Condon, M.S., CCC-SLP

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