If you are a parent of a child who stutters you
can help your child or teenager in many ways. Apart from
assisting him in finding and benefiting to varying degrees from
some form of speech therapy available in your area you can
assist by doing whatever you can to increase his confidence in
all areas of his life.
Depending on the severity of the speech
dysfluency many children have been known to recover from their
stuttering by tackling it head on by taking part in
activities that increase their self esteem and self confidence
to a greater extent than the stuttering is having an effect on
their speaking confidence.
Many children and teens who stutter have
benefited from taking part in drama classes in their childhood
years. It is a well documented fact that most people who have a
speech dysfluency do not stutter when they are singing or
acting another character.
Excelling academically or in a sporting field
also lifts the self confidence of all children particularly
children who are susceptible to experiencing low self esteem
for one reason or another.
Children, and particularly teenagers,
can also benefit from encouraging comments from their
parents. Always assure your children that they will be
able to achieve what ever they want in their life if they are
prepared to remain positive and work towards their goals. Tell
your children to never let their stuttering stop them from
doing what ever they want in life.
It will also help your child if the environment
at home is as relaxed and stress free, loving and
supportive as possible.
Talk to him about his stuttering at the
right time. Be understanding as to what your child is going
through. Also understand that it will not help to say things
like "just slow down" or comments like "will you stop
stuttering". Your child will react negatively to such comments
and it is likely to make their stuttering worse.
Some teens who stutter can be the subject of
bullying from time to time. Be aware of any bullying that may
be occurring in your youth's life and seek advice in that
regard if it becomes a problem.
As far as speech therapy is concerned there are
many competent speech pathologists who will be able to help. At
the same time there are many professionals who are not as well
trained in the treatment of stuttering as others so try to seek
out a professional who has a proven history of getting results
with clients who stutter. There are resources on this site
to help you find a competent speech pathologist.