The Sisskin Stuttering Center offers consultations, assessments, and individual and group therapy for children, teens, and adults who stutter. Parent support groups are offered free of charge for parents of children receiving services at our Center.
Individual therapy sessions are generally 60 minutes in length, once weekly. Teens and adults may opt for individual therapy, although many choose group therapy for the extra support it provides. Families of young children may participate in indirect, direct or operant approaches to treatment. Parents are included in sessions for young children, as training and modeling help generalization to home and community contexts. All of our associates have experience in treating young children and their families. Two of our associates are fully trained in Lidcombe Therapy.
We have a number of group therapy options including groups for young teens, older teens, adults, and a special group devoted to women who stutter covertly. Groups meets once a week for 2 hours.
While group therapy provides support, these are not support groups. Each group member follows an individualized treatment plan, is provided with rationale and instruction, and is expected to carry out self-formulated speech assignments that are meaningful and functional. Extensive guidance is provided to formulate successful assignments that lead to positive change toward one’s own definition of recovery. For many in Avoidance Reduction Therapy, recovery means “Saying everything you want, and speaking without fear .”
We provide comprehensive, multidimensional assessments for the purpose of diagnosis of fluency disorders, determining strengths and needs for treatment, and for problem solving during the course of treatment. For young children near onset, assessment will include parent interview as well as speech and language assessment because the language development profile can inform diagnosis, treatment decision making, and treatment direction. We take a close look at risk factors for persistence and recovery of stuttering because of the high probability that stuttering in young children near onset will resolve without assistance. For older children and adults, assessment includes overt symptoms of stuttering and reactive behaviors, thoughts and feelings associated with stuttering or fear of stuttering, life impact, contributing factors, and motivation for change.
Brief consultations (screenings) are offered to new clients to determine if the services we provide will meet individual needs. During consultations, we provide general recommendations for services and resources.
Individual and group therapy options are available through telepractice. We use HIPAA-secure software to protect your privacy. Due to licensing regulations, telepractice sessions are available in selected geographical locations.
Periodic support groups are provided for parents of children receiving services through the Sisskin Stuttering Center. Separate support group meetings are held for parents of young children and parents of school-age children. Meetings are facilitated by Vivian and our associates who work directly with the children and families. These meetings provide support and information, with opportunities to speak with other parents about their feelings and experiences, home strategies, school issues, and to gather needed resources.
The Sisskin Stuttering Center maintains a closed Google Group whose members include both current and past participants in Avoidance Reduction Therapy. This is an active group where members post questions, share experiences and report on assignments.
We have specialized experience and expertise in working with clients with coexisting disorders or conditions, especially autism. We find that the cognitive learning style in autism, as well as the profile of symptoms, may require some special programming. Three of our associates have specific experience in treating atypical speech disfluency, for example, presentation of final word disfluency (“game-ame”; “we-hee”). We have excellent outcomes for treating these kinds of disfluencies with short-term therapy.