The Evolution of Dynamic Stuttering Therapy

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The Evolution of Dynamic Stuttering Therapy

Over 20 years ago, I decided to devote all my time and effort as a Speech Clinician to one specific communication disorder – stuttering. It was then that I resigned as a public school speech therapist and opened Communication Therapy Institute. In the early years, I administered a fluency-shaping program in an intensive 3-week group format. At the time this was considered to be the most successful stuttering program available and I intended to do this kind of therapy for years to come. However, after about 4 years of trying to stick to the procedures and goals of fluency shaping as I had learned them, I began to realize that this approach did not take into account many of the aspects of stuttering that I was discovering. So, with care, I gradually made small changes that grew into big changes and evolved into an entirely different way of looking at and treating stuttering.

In 1993, the idea that stuttering was the result of a malfunctioning speech generating system was clear enough to me to write about it and to present it to my colleagues at The 3rd International Dysfluency Conference in Oxford, England. I also decided to write my program in the form of a Workbook and Clinician’s Guide. It was published in 1997 under the name Generating Fluent Speech: A Comprehensive Speech Processing Approach.

During the ensuing years my staff and I continued to treat clients while carefully observing what they did when speaking, how they felt, what they thought and how they were able to speak in the short and long term. Just when I thought I really understood how stuttering and fluent speech was created, the whole process of speaking became even clearer. As this happened, I made changes in therapy procedures. Instructions, activities and even the delivery model were changed. Sticking to my goal of making therapy as simple and effective as possible, I rewrote the workbook that was published in 2007 as Dynamic Stuttering Therapy.

Today we treat people who stutter of all ages. We still believe that the best delivery model when possible is intensive treatment, at least until the person is able to use and reinforce the process between therapy sessions. From then on some clients are able to continue independently, while others require more direct support from the clinician. We no longer do group therapy as we have decided that we prefer to give each client our undivided attention during the learning process. We do, however, recommend group practice and participation in support groups for clients who would benefit from a group atmosphere.

Our mortar and brick clinic continues to receive clients in New Jersey, USA and in Israel. In addition, we are making the same outstanding and effective treatment approach available to people all over the world via video conferencing.

All clients are treated according to the principles of the speech processing approach, the process of change, and the principles of developing new networks for neurological functions on which Dynamic Stuttering Therapy is based. We do not administer this therapy approach because we are loyal to the program. We administer this therapy approach because we are dedicated to our clients and we have seen that beyond doubt Dynamic Stuttering Therapy is the most up to date, most logical, practical and effective treatment for stuttering.

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Begin your path to fluency. Schedule your personal assessment at no cost with Barbara Dahm.