Supporting the mental health of children who stutter – part one

Runtime 00:28:59
Released 5/2/24
Emerging Minds Podcast
Emerging Minds Podcast
Supporting the mental health of children who stutter - part one

The Stuttering Association for the Young Australia (SAY:Australia) is a not-for-profit organisation based in Melbourne that supports, empowers and educates children and young people (aged 7–18 years) who stutter. SAY:Australia provides children and young people with a free, comprehensive and innovative educational arts program that addresses the physical, social and emotional impacts of stuttering. They offer a community of acceptance, friendship and encouragement for young Australians who stutter.

Stuttering impacts 70 million people around the world, including 9% of all children. Physically, stuttering can present as prolongations, repetitions and blocks in speech, but some would argue that its largest effect is on mental health and wellbeing. Children who have a stutter may experience isolation, self-esteem and confidence issues, social anxiety, and even self-harm or suicidal ideation. This highlights the need for more conversations around supporting the mental health and wellbeing of children with a stutter.

This episode is part one of a two-part series on supporting the mental health of children who stutter. We are joined by Rich Stephens, President of SAY:Australia, and Mitchell, who has been involved with SAY:Australia for the past four years, first as a participant and now as a mentor to other children and young people who stutter. In this episode, Rich and Mitchell talk about the activities of SAY:Australia, how common stuttering is and what it can look like, along with the impacts that having a stutter can have on children’s mental health and wellbeing.

In this episode you will learn:

  • what SAY:Australia does [01:37]
  • how common stuttering is [05:06]
  • what stuttering looks like in children [06:22]
  • the impact having a stutter in childhood can have on children’s mental health [11:34]

Further information and resources:

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