child mouthWithin the last few months, my daughter has begun stuttering. She talks a lot and is very expressive (even puts her hand on her hip all sassy like) and it tends to happen when she is very excited about something and wants to tell someone all about it. Sometimes it's just a word she gets stuck on; other times it's a phrase repeated. Of course I'm worried. Is this an issue that we need some speech therapy to fix? 

I spoke to one of my friends about it who has a daughter with a different speech challenge and she told me that her doctor assured her not to worry and that's it's something most kids grow out of. That made me feel a little better, but then a study came out suggesting there is a link between children who stutter and verbal and non-verbal scores.

Stuttering is not only common but it rarely has a negative effect on kids when it comes to their social and emotional well-being. Lead author of the study Sheena Reilly said it was a "very positive finding" to learn children who stutter are not withdrawn. This study also revealed that kids who stutter had higher verbal and non-verbal scores than the kids who did not. Wow! I am relieved to know that a little stammering may not effect my daughter at all.

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I have noticed that my 3 1/2 year old stutters the most when she's around her grandmother. The only thing different there is she is the most chatty when she's around my mother -- I think "Me-ma" is her favorite person in the world. They are so cute together and even have the same haircut. So my daughter gets more excited and expressive and tends to stammer when talking to her. My mom doesn't stutter so it's not that she mimics her. And thankfully my daughter isn't talking in a Queens, Nu Yawk, accent like my mom has either. (Love you and your voice, Mom!)

I was a little worried about it, but mostly wanted to know if there was something I should do about it now before it got worse ... or if it even had the ability to get worse. I'm not as concerned now, but we'll still keep an ear out for any changes.

Does your child stutter? What have you learned about stuttering that you can share?


Image via Salma Rashad/Flickr