Stuttering is an interruption of the normal flow of speech, which takes on many different patterns. Commonly, it involves either saying a string of repeated sounds or making abnormal pauses during speech. In early childhood, stuttering is sometimes part of normal speech development. In fact, about 5% of all young children go through a brief period of stuttering when they are learning to talk. Stuttering typically is first noticed between the ages of 2 and 5. It usually goes away on its own within a matter of months. In a small number of children (around 1%), stuttering continues and may get worse. Boys are more likely to stutter than girls.
In addition, normal problems with fluency tend to come and go, or happen only at certain times (such as when a child is tired or excited), but true stuttering is present most of the time. Once a child begins to stutter, he or she may feel embarrassed, self-conscious or anxious when asked to speak. The child may find it hard to socialize with friends and also may intentionally avoid situations where talking is expected, such as telephone calls, classroom discussions and school plays. Somewhat unexpectedly, many children who stutter have no problem when they sing. According to some experts, this is because speaking and singing often come from opposite sides of the brain, especially in right-handed people. Although episodes of stuttering speech are usually easy to recognize, a diagnosis of true stuttering should always be made by a professional. If you are concerned that your child seems to be stuttering, talk with your child's doctor.
The rate of carriage among adults was compared with that among children (age, ?6 years) in the same population. Nasopharyngeal culture results for 1300 adults and 404 children were analyzed. S. was carried by only 4% of the adults, compared with 53% of children in the same community. Young age, day care center attendance, having young siblings, and no antibiotic use during the month before screening were associated with the high carriage rate among children, whereas the only risk factor associated with carriage among adults was the presence of a respiratory infection on the screening day. S. serotype distribution and antibiotic resistance patterns differed between adults and children.