If you are one of the millions of people with a speech impediment, life can seem to be more challenging than it should be. Communication is essential for us to be understood and to show that we understand too. If your speech impediment is causing problems with your communication, it is probably causing you to have a lack of confidence when speaking to people too.
There are many speech impediments, and each present their own problems. All of them can be quite distressing to have to live with. Children may mock eachother but when you are mocked about your speech, it often causes you to not speak at all. What else can you do when you can’t get the words out effectively?
Almost all the speech impediments we will list have no drug therapies to help them at all. Instead, cognitive and behavioural therapies are favored. They are combined with speech exercises to help improve clarity of speech. For some, a natural remedy for the anxiety that a speech impediment may cause is recommended.
A lisp may be caused by oral development problems or mishapen parts of the mouth. Sometimes it is caused by poor skills at producing the correct letter sounds, and can be helped with a short course of speech therapy. The sound of a lisp is prominent and hard to miss, but rarely causes problems with being understood.
A stutter is very hard to cope with if it is allowed to overwhelm your train of thought whilst speaking. Often the stutterer will get stuck on one sound or part of a word. They may select an alternative word, or repeat the sound a number of times before being able to move the sentence along. There are many therapies for stuttering but several may need to be tried to find the right one.
Apraxia in speech cannot be cured. Like other apraxias, it is a developmental problem evident from birth. It can be acquired through brain damage or stroke in adulthood too. There is little that can be done to improve this condition. Instead, sufferers need to find coping methods or alternative solutions for communicating. It can affect just one type of mouth movement, or many.
Speech Sound Disorders occur when someone has difficulty pronouncing certain letter sounds like ‘th’ or ‘l’. Usually this is overcome with speech therapy that concentrates on the sound and the shape of the mouth to produce it. It could be a phonetic problem where the speaker cannot distinguish the difference in sounds. A phonemic problem is where the speaker cannot distinguish the difference in mouth shapes to form the sounds.
There are many more problems with speech that may occur in your life. Most are evident in childhood and may even arise during this period. Cluttering is one condition that may be the symptom of another problem that may be helped by drug intervention. Dyslexia and Hyperactivity may be the cause of fast, stumbling speech that may become cluttering. Speak to your healthcare professional for clarification.