Stuttering affects the fluency of speech. When there are disruptions in speech, they are termed dysfluencies. The frequency, duration, type and severity of speech dysfluency vary greatly from person and speaking situation.
Challenges may occur when speaking on the phone, having a conversation, ordering food in a restaurant, or talking in front of a group of people. As a result, stutterers may limit their participation in many activities.
Most people produce brief dysfluencies when they repeat words or use fillers such as “um” and “uh” when speaking. However, dysfluencies can impede communication when a person produces too many of them. It can present challenges when speaking on the phone when having a conversation with friends and family, or talking in front of a group of people. As a result, people may limit their participation in those activities.
School children who stutter experience poorer educational adjustment than normal speakers. For the two to three percent of adults who stutter, employers believe stuttering decreases employability and interferes with promotion opportunities. In both cases, it’s proven that speech therapy significantly reduces the frequency in stuttering. Children have been shown to experience a 61% decrease in dysfluencies, and studies have reported that adults improved by 60 to 80%.