February 3, 2014

Mumbai questions

Ashish and I were planning to do a video interview based on following questions but due to unseen interruptions, we could not do so. So, here we are offering our quick answers to the questions raised during Mumbai Workshop. Answers are brief because depth and details are already covered in Apna Hath Jagannath, this blog and elsewhere. Keep talking and smiling!

1.  Why do we stammer and what is the cause for the same?
Discussed in detail in Apna Hath Jagannath and elsewhere.
2.       Why do we have blocks?
Current understanding: The nerve impulse from the brain fails to come and therefore our speech organs are “stuck” or they repeat the last syllable TILL the impuse arrives: Ra – Ra -Ra – Ram.

4.       Is there is any medical cure to stammering? NO.
5.       How have stammers improve their stammering:
By practice, practice, practice- and acceptance of a little imperfection in life!
6.       Is there any technique which can cure stammering 100%? NO.
7.       Best technique to cure stammering?
Acceptance, dedicated practice of communication skills for 6-12 months and lot of courage. All this is available at the single window of SHG.
8.       Can we have more workshops for a longer period of time , where we can unlearn and start speaking from scratch: Yes, you can. But really not needed. What is truly needed is follow up workshops. If you can attend 3-4 workshops (not just one) over an year, and regularly attend and lead your SHG, you can overcome your problems.
9.       How breathing from mouth can help a stammer?
Not recommended. Breath through nose, normally BEFORE you start to speak. Let it be a natural action. Pause here and there to breathe and then carry on speaking.
10.   How to be more aware and conscious about oneself while speaking? By frequently recording your self with a video camera or cellphone, during formal and informal situations and reviewing it..
11.   Can we practice breathing techniques like pranayam in our meetings? SURE!
12.   What is TISA and I want to know more about it? Check stammer.in and join our next National Conference or Communication workshop or other regional events.
13.   Why is stammering our biggest fear? We have learned to “make” it so.. because of childhood learning and influences. You can step out of it through Voluntary stuttering. But begin with your SHG and gradually increase the level of difficulty...
14.   Can I ever become a fluent speaker? YESSSSSS! Many have done it.
15.   Why do we stammer more in front of a group of people? Subconscious fears which we have learned during our growing up years.
16.   Many a times, there is a severe block where I am unable to implement any technique. Why?
This is a “learned helplessness”- which can be unlearned through repeated use of Voluntary stuttering and block correction techniques..
17.   Is there any relation between stammering and ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) ?
Not clearly proven but it can affect therapy outcomes.
“Little is known about the specific characteristics of stuttering in children with ADHD other than the fact that the patterns of disfluencies are consistent with those of children who stutter who do not have ADHD... However, clinical findings often report that significant attention and impulsivity issues, without a current diagnosis of ADHD, negatively affect the outcome of stuttering treatment.”
Check these links: http://www.stutteringhelp.org/adhd-and-stuttering

18.   Is there any relation between stammering & anxiety? Also, what is the relation between human psychology and stammering?
Stammering generates anxiety. Anxiety does not CAUSE stammering but it can increase it. One can stammer even when totally calm and relaxed. Stammering has a neurobiological origin and as we grow we tend to develop a “stammering mindset” based on our experiences and OUR reactions to them.. (see AHJ for details)
19.   Can I join any speech therapist like XYZ stammering centre?
It is your decision. TISA promotes self help.
20.   If I change my accent, then will it improve my stammering? Yes, for some time.
21.   Do I have to take a new breath every time I bounce while using bouncing? Also to bounce on words like Gulshan i.e should I bounce like Ga,Ga,Ga, Gulshan or Gu, Gu , Gu, Gulshan.
It should be Gu, Gu , Gu, Gulshan. Initially take a breath between bounces but later on just briefly stop and carry on. The whole idea is to bounce with CALM CONTROL. Please check the Bouncing section in AHJ.
22.   For words which start with two consonants consecutively (like Spring, Dhruv , Thane, Thames etc), there is no phonetic sound of  vowel to bounce. So how should we implement bouncing on such words?
Separate the two consonants: Crocin - Currocin. Spring – Sapring, Dhruv - Dharuuv (many nationalities actually speak like this. It is OK). For details- play all following list

23.   Many a times there is a silent block where bouncing does not works, so should I try gentle onset on such words. How should i choose between bouncing & gentle onset for difficult words? -
Try them both in different situations and then stick with what seems most comfortable to you. You can combine them too: start with a gentle onset on the first bounce.. Try, try, try..
24.   I believe slow speaking with 2-3 words per breath solves 70% of our problems.  Whenever there is a block, I just take a new breath and speak with gentle onset and I am able to overcome my block. So why do we teach so many techniques like bouncing, Pre- block, In- block and Post- block correction , as it leads to confusion many a times.
Because stammering is a highly individualized and variable phenomena. What works for me – may not work for others. What worked for me two years ago, may not work for me now. This is why TISA offers many techniques, many views, many approaches, so that you may have find something which works for you.


naman mirchandani said...

thanks sir....for clarifying our doubts.....

Manimaran said...

It's like a small hand book on FAQ on stammering. No one can explain simpler than this one. Thanks Sachin for taking so much of effortd to compile such a simple answer.

jasbir singh said...

Wonderful answers Dr. Sachin. I salute your dedication for the cause.