Stammering therapy

What’s the approach?


Speech therapy sessions are tailored to your particular needs. There are 3 main stages to the approach:

  • identification (becoming more aware of habits of mind, body, speech and behaviour in relation to speaking situations)
  • desensitisation and avoidance reduction (reducing the impact of negative feelings and behaviour associated with stammering)
  • modification (starting to experiment with alternative approaches to speaking that can feel easier and less effortful)

Therapy begins with an in-depth exploration of the different aspects of your stammer and what supports your fluency. Your stammer. Your fluency. Not anyone else’s! Useful insights start to emerge out of this exploration. Sustainable changes can then develop out of your own growing understanding of yourself and the way you communicate, rather than from “quick fix” techniques which tend to be impossible to maintain.

In order to be as effective as possible, stammering therapy needs to address the psychological, emotional, physical and behavioural aspects of your stammer.

Speech therapy modules include the following:

  • psychotherapeutic techniques (eg from Focusing, Solution Focused Brief Therapy, Narrative Therapy, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy) – learn to relate differently to difficult thoughts and feelings about stammering and start becoming more confident about yourself and your communication
  • mindfulness-based approaches to stress reduction – learn to become more aware and curious about your habitual thoughts, feelings and physical sensations in a way that can help you to face challenges with more openness and self-acceptance
  • avoidance reduction therapy – learn to reduce avoidance behaviour step-by-step, reduce the fear of stammering and become more free to say and do what’s important to you
  • block modification therapy – learn stammering management strategies which can reduce tension and help you to start speaking with more ease
  • fluency skills – learn ways to allow your breathing, voicing and articulation to support natural fluency, with minimal effort.

The duration and outcomes of therapy are influenced by a number of factors, including the complexity of your stammer, the depth of change you are looking for and the degree to which you are open to actively engaging with recommendations and daily life practices between sessions. Speech therapy generally takes place in 6 session cycles. It can be short-term (6 sessions), medium-term (12+ sessions) and sometimes longer-term (a year or more). At the start of therapy, it’s advisable to keep an open mind about the possibility of continuing beyond the initial 6 sessions. Having laid firm foundations for relating to different aspects of your experience with more ease in the first cycle, the second cycle focuses more directly on relating to things that happen in and around moments of dysfluency.

Free initial consultation

PLEASE NOTE: I’m sorry but I’m not currently taking on any new clients. If you would like me to let you know when I start doing so again, please:


* Your first name

* Your last name

* Your email

* Please write a little about why you'd like a consultation


    Sarah Leach

    Speech Therapist (fluency specialist)

    5 Staple Inn, High Holborn,
    London WC1V 7QH

    Keep in touch

    Royal College of Speech & Language Therapists

    Association of Speech and Language Therapists in Independent Practice

    Giving Voice | Speech and Language Therapy transforms lives