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If you have a child who stutters, learn about alternatives to speech therapy, including drug therapy and specialized electronic devices.
There is no drug approved to treat stuttering. However, there are drugs that are used to treat other conditions - such as epilepsy, anxiety, or depression - that have been used to treat stuttering in adults. Adult clinical trials of other possible drug treatments are currently underway.
Electronic devices that fit on the ear either delay or alter the sound of the speaker's voice, creating an echo, or play some sort of sound, both of which are known to reduce stuttering, according to The Stuttering Foundation. The Speech Easy and The Fluency Master are two such devices. Dr. Jeffrey J. Felixbrod, Ph.D., The Fluency Master's administrative director, says that many of the parents who inquire about The Fluency Master have tried two to three years of conventional speech therapy for their child; he notes that training for using the device typically takes one office session.
If you would like to try an electronic device for your child, most experts agree that it should be used in conjunction with speech therapy and should not be thought of as a "miracle cure." Some experts say the effects may wear off over time.
Also see: Stuttering in Children: Diagnosis, Treatment, and Finding Support
National Stuttering Association
FRIENDS, The National Association of Young People Who Stutter
Stuttering Foundation of America
Specialty Board on Fluency Disorders
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