Stuttering: Approximation and Stabilization

Over the past few weeks, we’ve addressed the topic of fluency disorders and some of the different ways that speech-language pathologists may address the problem. Today we conclude our series with the final steps of stuttering modification therapy: approximation and stabilization.

The first stages of stuttering modification as outlined in last week’s blog involve identifying when stuttering occurs, desensitizing the individual to the moment of stuttering, and modifying the way the stutter occurs. Once the individual is comfortable with these, the next step is to approximate fluency by reducing the tension and severity of the stutter.

There are three common strategies for minimizing the moment of stuttering. The first is cancellation, a technique that involves stopping and immediately repeating a word which induces a stutter. The second is called a pull-out; in this technique, the individual pauses and attempts to gain control of the stutter while it is actually happening, slowly and purposefully drawing out the remained of the word. The final technique is a preparatory set. This involves the individual preparing for a moment of stuttering by actually voluntarily stuttering the first sound of a word in order to prevent becoming stuck.

In the final stage of stuttering modification therapy, stabilization, the speech-language pathologist helps the client to integrate stuttering modification into their day-to-day life. Gradually, techniques are generalized outside the therapy room and into communication situations which the client originally found stressful.

Have an interest in speech-language pathology or communication disorders? Let us know which topics you’d like to see SANY discuss in future blogs! We love to hear suggestions from our readers.

Do you think that you or someone you know may benefit from the services of a speech-language pathologist? Contact Speech Associates of New York at 917-841-2965 or visit us on the web at www.speechassociatesofny.com. We’ll pair you with one of our trained and certified speech-language pathologists who can provide in-home therapy to help address your speech, language, and communication needs.

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