A Potted Glossary of Speech and Language Therapy

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I believe one of the advantages of stammering is the intimate relationship with language it brings. Stammerers think, feel and speak language in a way that is at once broken but at the same time filled with opportunities. Blocking, repeating and word-swapping can all be seen as failures of communication, but they also open up avenues of speech that would in a fluent person go unexplored. Indeed, the multitude of authors who stammer – David Mitchell, John Updike, Lewis Carroll – evidence the unique apprenticeship in language offered by stammering.

It is with this in mind, the importance of words to people who stammer, that I want to begin to reflect on some of the common language we hear in and around speech and language therapy.

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Questions of Consent in Stammering

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As a doctor, I believe any medical therapy should begin with an agreement between the client and therapist to proceed down a track of therapy with full awareness of the advantages and disadvantages of the approach being taken, as well as alternatives options, without coercion. This process is formerly called voluntary informed consent and it is a cornerstone of good medical practice

Recently, I have been thinking about two issues that stammering pride and the social model pose around informed consent for stammering therapy.

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