Cluttering treatment

Like you, every cluttering speaker is unique and has its own palette of symptoms. This means that cluttering treatment should always be tailored to the specific needs of the person who clutters. However, some parts are a prerequisite for each and every treatment. See what speech-language therapists Ken St. Louis and Dana Wierzbicki have to say about what treatment for cluttering entails.

Points of attention in cluttering treatment

Which exercises your treatment consists of depends on the type of cluttering you exhibit. It is important that you recognize and identify the specific symptoms of cluttering in your own speech. Making recordings therefore is the first crucial element in your treatment. This way you know what exactly goes wrong and when it happens. You also need to know how to measure and evaluate your speech rate. Although every treatment for cluttering should be tailored to the clutterer’s needs, there are some general guidelines to take into account.

Calculating your speech rate

In cluttering your speech rate is a crucial element. The more you are in control of your speech rate, the less you clutter. But how do you calculate your pace of speaking? Fortunately, it is not that difficult. Download a program, load your recordings and select a few fragments. Doing the maths is easy! Watch the video for more information.

Tool for self-monitoring in cluttering treatment

Recognizing the symptoms of cluttering while speaking (self-monitoring) is often difficult for people who clutter. That is why it can be useful, especially at the beginning of your treatment, to use devices that allow you to reflect on your own speech in real time. This technique is called Delayed Auditory Feedback (DAF). There are various apps, devices and programs out there that provide live feedback on your speech.

Variation and length of pauses

Apart from speech rate there are also other indicators that can help determine whether or not you clutter. Such as the variation in your speech rate and the length of your pauses. Like your speech rate, these are easy to calculate, too. Did you do the math? Then compare the results with the norms. A good start for cluttering treatment!

Lowering your speech rate

After becoming more aware of the sloppinesses in your speech, your treatment focuses on lowering your speech rate. There are various ways to do that. Well-known techniques are syllable tapping and taking pauses. Syllable tapping involves tapping your fingers with every syllable you pronounce (or that you should pronounce). This makes you more aware of the number of syllables a word or sentence contains and helps you distinguish the syllables from each other. The result is that you start talking in a more constant rhythm, making it easier for others to understand you. Especially in phonological cluttering it is important that you pay attention to expressing all syllables. Taking pauses is an ideal technique for syntactic cluttering. But there is more to know about cluttering therapy techniques.

Need help for cluttering?

Instead of treatment with a speech-language therapist, it can sometimes be very refreshing to receive guidance from an expert by experience. We therefore offer coaching from the perspective of a person who clutters. Curious? Book one of our coaching options right away.

Do you prefer a certified speech-language pathologist? See if you can find one in your country or district. Are you a SLP yourself? Then display your practice on our website.