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Stutter in 2.5 yo
7 replies to this topic
Posted 12 February 2013 - 07:56 PM
I'm looking for some experiences and advice about my 2.5 yo DS's stutter. He talks very well (4-5 word sentences by 2nd birthday) and now converses fluently, although is a little shy in crowds and when he first meets a new person. In the last month he has developed a stutter, in the beginning it was only with words starting with 'W' at the beginning of a sentence, but in the last few weeks it has 'spread' to more letters and throughout his sentences. It is more pronounced in the afternoon when he is tired, and some days is worse than others. It does bother him when he can't get the word out - he will then give up and tell me (sadly ) "Mummy I'm trying to talk but the words won't come out". I've told him that its OK and sometimes happens and that he can use a different word to start the sentence and still tell me the same thing/or ask the same question.
I've done some reading and discovered that it is not uncommon and some sources recommend waiting for 6 months to see if it resolves itself, and other recommend speech therapy earlier. I think I'd like to get him some help sooner rather than later, but don't want to make a big deal about it and have him get self conscious about it either. So I'm interested to hear your experiences with a stuttering toddler and thoughts on when to seek help.
Posted 12 February 2013 - 08:05 PM
I would get help now. My 5 yr old has just developed a stutter recently, and his speechie has decided that we should drop everything else we were working on, and tackle the stutter problem now.
Posted 12 February 2013 - 08:09 PM
DD developed a stutter around 3, I took her along to her GP because I was worried and wasn't sure if she needed speech therapy.
To cut a long story short - DD's was a result of her trying to get so many words out at once that her brain can't keep up especially when she gets over excited. My explanation is in very simplistic terms.
I see no harm in discussing with your GP though
Posted 12 February 2013 - 08:23 PM
Stutters are developmental, however seeing he has noticed the problem, I would contact a speech therapist.
My guy had a bit of a stutter around that age, and I would tell him to stop and really think about what he wanted to say, but he didn't realised it was happening. And it sorted out after a while. At the time I spoke to my friend who is a speach therapist and she said to wait, and if it still happens after three months, or he notices the problem, then see someone.
Edited by wallofdodo, 12 February 2013 - 08:25 PM.
Posted 12 February 2013 - 08:28 PM
You're right, it is quite common at that age - as PPs said, it's tough for them to get all the words out when their language is improving quickly. It's also common for it to be worse when they're tired or excited, like you have described.
If it is bothering him, I think it's worth having an assessment with a speech pathologist though - if it was me (I am a speechie) I'd probably recommend monitoring for a few months, give some exercises, and give you some strategies for helping him not be too stressed about it. Stutters are often made worse by anxiety, so if a child is feeling upset about it, the stutter can often become worse. There are some really effective strategies for helping kids with stuttering.
Keep it light, try to be patient if he's taking a while to get his words out, and don't finish his words for him (unless that's what he wants). Just in case it doesn't clear up, keep a note of when it began and how/if it progresses (like you have done in this forum) for future reference. Sounds like you're making a great start on your own!
If you can afford it, you can book him in for an assessment fairly quickly with a private speechie. If not, get on a waiting list now (at a community health centre, for instance) and if the stutter clears up on its own, no loss, and if it doesn't, you'll have served the (sometimes considerable) wait!
Good on you OP for keeping on top of it! You can look at www.speechpathologyaustralia.org.au to find a speechie in your area.
Posted 12 February 2013 - 08:38 PM
Depending on where you live the waiting lists for services can be very long so I'd get your name down ASAP, then if he grows out of it in 6 months you can just take your name off the list.
My cousins son had a stutter. Apparently if is best to get it treated before the age of 5 as when they get older it is much more difficult to treat. He saw a speech therapist for a few months at age 3.5 and now he doesnt stutter (he's nearly 5 now).
Posted 12 February 2013 - 08:41 PM
Thanks everyone - really useful replies. He is a very sensitive and intuitive boy, and I don't want him to get anxious about it and risk making it worse.
Kazzamama - Thanks for that advice, I'll check out that link and get him an appointment with a speech pathologist soon.
Posted 12 February 2013 - 08:49 PM
My DD developed a stutter when she was 3. I found it pretty upsetting as it frustrated and upset her, as she was finding it difficult to express herself when she had already been talking well for quite some time.
I took her to a speech therapist, who assessed her and said to leave it 6mnths as it may be developmental and would go away without speech therapy. The stutter came and went over a total of about 9-12mnths and then disappeared completely.
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