Anxiety in speakers who persist and recover from stuttering

J Commun Disord. 2007 Sep-Oct;40(5):398-417. doi: 10.1016/j.jcomdis.2006.10.003. Epub 2006 Dec 8.


Purpose: The study was designed to see whether young children and adolescents who persist in their stutter (N=18) show differences in trait and/or state anxiety compared with people who recover from their stutter (N=17) and fluent control speakers (N=19).

Method: A fluent control group, a group of speakers who have been documented as stuttering in the past but do not stutter now and a group of speakers (also with a documented history of stuttering) who persist in their stuttering participated, all aged 10-17 years. The State-Trait Anxiety Inventory for Children was administered.

Results: There were no differences between persistent, recovered and control groups with regard to trait anxiety. The persistent group had higher state anxiety than controls and the recovered group for three out of four speaking situations.

Conclusion: The findings are interpreted as showing that anxiety levels in certain affective states appear to be associated with the speaking problem.

Learning outcomes: A reader should be able to appreciate the difference between state and trait anxiety understand views about how the role anxiety has on stuttering has changed over time appreciate different views about how anxiety affects speakers who persist and recover from stuttering see why longitudinal work is needed to study these issues.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adaptation, Psychological
  • Adolescent
  • Anxiety / diagnosis
  • Anxiety / psychology*
  • Child
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Individuality
  • Male
  • Personality Assessment
  • Speech Production Measurement
  • Speech Therapy*
  • Stuttering / psychology*
  • Stuttering / therapy
  • Temperament