I am often asked to explain how Dynamic Stuttering Therapy differs from other therapies. The short answer is in almost every way. The more complete answer is that our focus is not on how to, or not to stutter. Dynamic Stuttering Therapy shows clients how to produce speech in the same way that normally fluent speakers produce speech. Naturally, if the process for producing speech is the same, the results are also the same – normally fluent speech. This is logical. People who stutter are capable of changing the way they process speech, so it is also possible. There is a clinically proven cause and effect between speech processing and fluency. That is why Dynamic Stuttering Therapy is the most effective approach for treating stuttering.
For some strange reason, until now people have thought of stuttering as if it were a condition that has little to do with the process of speaking. This is unlike almost any other speech condition in the field of Speech Therapy. If a person has poor vocal quality, the goal of therapy is to change the way the voice functions. If a child has language development problems, we search for the weakness in language processing and work to strengthen it, and so forth. However, with stuttering the goal is either on directly changing the speech itself or, alternatively, accepting that “once a stutterer, always a stutterer”.
There are therapies that do try to manipulate aspects of speaking, such as controlling the rhythm of speech, slowing it down, or controlling breathing. However, while in some cases these approaches might inadvertently cause the speaker to change the interactive neural process of producing speech, they do not actually deal directly with normal speech production. Dynamic Stuttering Therapy directly treats the neural network involved in creating speech.
The normal process for producing speech is essentially automatic. Controlling what you will say or how to say it is the antithesis of normal processing. We do not tell our clients to speak slowly, control their breathing, use gentle onsets or other techniques that require control. We guide them to give up control and show them how to speak automatically and without effort.
Dynamic Stuttering Therapy is an exciting experience, because people who stutter see that within themselves, they have the basic ability to produce speech normally. In some cases they even use this ability some of the time. However, because their focus is so much on the outcome, fluency/stuttering, they are not aware of the inner workings of speaking. Dynamic Stuttering Therapy is a process of self-discovery and change. There is no pressure on our clients to be fluent speakers. However, as they develop greater awareness of their way of producing speech their attitudes and behaviors gradually change. Speaking becomes effortless, comfortable and enjoyable.