Do you have a stammer? Have you ever wondered if anyone can help? ITV is looking for people who suffer with stutters to partake in an upcoming documentary – and you could be a part of it.
People with the speech impediment in Burton and South Derbyshire may now have found the answer to their problems. The documentary, due to begin filming between September 25 and 30, will see people with stammers undergo an intensive four-day training course which aims to help them manage their stutter.
The course is run and taught by people who also have a stammer, so they understand the challenges facing their students.
The closing date for applications is on September 4, 2017. Due to the course being residential, candidates will need to be available for all dates required.
Anyone who wants to apply must be a resident of the UK. Anyone under 18 will need permission from a parent or guardian. ITV’s general participation terms apply – rules and regulations are available at itv.com/terms.
What is a stammer?
According to the NHS, a stammer – sometimes referred to as stuttering – is a relatively common speech problem in childhood, which can persist into adulthood.
Stammering occurs when you repeat sounds or syllables, such as saying "mu-um-mu-mummy".
Sounds can also sound longer, for example, "mmmmummy".
Stammering varies in severity from person to person, and from situation to situation. Someone might have periods of stammering followed by times when they speak relatively fluently.
It isn’t possible to say for sure why a particular child starts stammering, but it isn’t caused by anything the parents have done.
Developmental and inherited factors may play a part, along with small differences in how efficiently the speech areas of the brain are working.
There are two types of stammering. They’re known as:
Developmental stammering – the most common type of stammering; it occurs in early childhood when speech and language skills are developing rapidly; and
Acquired or late-onset stammering – this type of stammering is relatively rare and occurs in older children and adults as a result of a head injury, stroke or a progressive neurological condition.
Libby Hill, speech therapist from Small Talk Speech and Language Therapy, which covers Burton, said stammers can have a devastating effect on people’s lives.
"Those who have a stammer need referring to speech and language therapy because each person who stammers has many different reasons as to why they do it.
"A lot of pre-school children go through non-fluency and it can be frightening. If not handled correctly, it can turn into a full stammer.
"Stammers can affect all aspects of life. People who stammer often say it spoils their chances of getting a job, affects their relationships and their work life."
Anyone who wants to apply to the ITV documentary, or to find out more, can email their full name and telephone number to stammercoach.itv.com.