Luc F De Nil, PhD
Fanny Ling, BA
|Abstract||Family physicians, paediatricians, and other health care workers often are the first professionals consulted by parents who are concerned about their child's speech fluency, and by adults who stutter. They are asked for advice regarding the nature of the problem and recommended treatment. The purpose of the present study was to investigate the type of information on stuttering that is available in health-related publications aimed at these health professionals. The survey of the literature found a generally balanced presentation of the definition, aetiology, and treatment of stuttering. Often, however, the information was dated, especially in the more recent publications. Environmental intervention recommendations were typically limited to advice for the parents not to worry and to leave the child's speech alone. Suggestions for direct treatment most often made reference to "syllable timed" speech. In addition, only approximately one third of the texts included an explicit referral to a speech-language pathologist. It is concluded that speech-language pathologists need to play a proactive role in the dissemination of current information about stuttering, parent counselling, and intervention to other health-care professionals.|
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