Authors: Yaruss JS, Coleman C, Hammer D
Title: Treating Preschool Children Who Stutter: Description and Preliminary Evaluation of a Family-Focused Treatment Approach
Source: Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools 2006 37(2): 118-136
Year: 2006
Research Design: Case Series

PURPOSE: The purpose of this article is to present a detailed description of a family-focused treatment for preschool children who stutter that addresses communication behaviors and attitudinal reactions that children and their parents may exhibit in reaction to stuttering, as well as a preliminary evaluation of the outcomes of that treatment. METHOD: The study involved assessment of the children's speech fluency and a client satisfaction questionnaire that sought parents' opinions about which aspects of the treatment were beneficial. Participants were 17 children who stutter, ages 31 to 62 months, and their families. RESULTS: Responses to the questionnaire indicated that treatment helped families learn about stuttering and about strategies that facilitate children's fluency. Evaluation of the children's fluency revealed that all participants achieved improved fluency at the conclusion of treatment and at long-term follow-up. IMPLICATIONS: Findings suggest that this treatment approach may be useful for helping children achieve improved speech fluency, effective communication skills, and healthy communication attitudes.

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