selective mutism in children

Selective mutism can be someone who speaks to some people or none. It can affect adults and children alike. The causes may be due to ASD or trauma. In the NHS it is usually treated by the child being referred to their local speech and language therapist. Interestingly, selective mutism is not due to language difficulties but is based on fear.

Anxiety based

When the nervous system is triggered into the hyperfreeze state, it causes rigidity, which can be felt in the throat. When this happens, then the sufferer will feel unable to speak. Consequently, speech and language therapy will not help. The only thing that can help is the reduction of fear. This can be done with either hypnotherapy or EMDR or ideally both. The average amount of sessions for SM is 5.

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