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Lisping: Sailing Slowly and Steadily

Lisping: Sailing Slowly and Steadily

It isn’t very rare to encounter someone who has a lisp. It’s something that occurs in quite a lot of people and isn’t something way out of the ordinary. Often identified through a misarticulation of a letter or some letters (sibilants), a Lisp is simply an isolated disorder not connected to any other impediments in learning or in behavior. Unlike a lot of others believe it to be, having a lisp is only a problem with unclear speech, not a learning disability.

There are various reasons on how a person can acquire a lisp. Lisps occur a lot within childhood, but most people grow out of it. Some acquire lisping during adulthood. Primarily, lisping is caused by a functional problem in the mouth. A common example is when the /s/ or /z/ sound comes out like a /t/. This can be caused by a misplacement of the tongue, causing air to go in between the front teeth. In some cases, lisps are caused by mannerisms related to the tongue and/or mouth, creating a reflex that manifests whenever speaking, causing the speech impediment.

Most adults bring younger children to speech therapists when their child acquires a lisp. Adults consult therapists about their lisp too. However, there are ways to exercise your child/ren’s speech so that they can get of their lisp—these methods apply to adults, too.

Practicing the /s/ or /z/ sound while the lower and upper front teeth are together has proved effective for people encountering the /s/ to /th/ lisp. There is also a method where repeatedly making the /t/ sound fast enough can practice the isolation of the /s/ sound. Another popular technique is to practice with simple words with the syllable in question and then progress to using in sentences to train the mouth with more complex functions, specifically on sibilants. There are many ways to get rid of a lisp. After all, the tongue is just a muscle that can be exercised and practiced for proper functioning.

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