Causes of Stuttering – Three Theories
The causes of stuttering have been widely studied, and debated greatly over the years. Most research indicates that stuttering, which affects roughly 4-5 percent of people at some point in their lives, is a direct result of one of the follow three areas.
Stuttering is Learned
Some research suggest that stuttering is a learned behavior. It is common for children to stutter at some point in their early life while speaking. The learned behavior theory suggest that if they are chastised, corrected, reprimanded, or made to feel dumb for their stuttering the anxiety caused by this will cause them to stutter more. As the stuttering continues, it becomes part of their speech, much like fluent speech would if the stress and anxiety during the learning phase were not present.
Stuttering is Psychological
The second theory as to what causes stuttering is that it is psychological. Simply put there is something different in the brain between a person who stutters and one that does not. In all other aspects of the persons life the psychological difference in the brain causes no effects. However the stuttering person’s brain may react to stress and anxiety with a stuttering block, whereas the non stuttering persons brain allows them to speak fluently in the same situations.
Stuttering is Genetic
There is also some research to indicate that stuttering is genetic to some degree. Stuttering has been shown to run in families, however there is much research in this field that still needs to be done to solidify the genetic link between stutters and their family DNA.
Now you Know Why, But How do you Treat Stuttering
The strongest link to why people stutter is the learned behavior theory. This is actually good news for those who stutter.
If a behavior can be learned, it can be unlearned as well – the theory suggests.
This means that finding a stop stuttering program which “teaches” you how to stop stuttering, will essentially override the learned behavior that caused you to stutter in the first place – even if it were many years ago.