Stuttering in kids: When does it start?

Has your child started to stutter? It might be part of a developmental phase, but you might want to get it checked out, just in case.

Robert M. Kroll, speech-language pathologist 0

Photo: yuhirao/iStockphoto

Q: My six-year-old just started stuttering. Do I need to get him examined by a doctor, or could it just be a phase?

A: Stuttering typically starts between the ages of three and six. It is important to understand that in up to 75 percent of these cases, the child is going through a normal period of language development, and his bumpy speech may not be true stuttering, but something called “normal non-fluency.” You would be well-advised to contact a speech-language pathologist who will be able to determine whether your child is truly stuttering, or passing through this developmental phase.

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