Question: What Does Selective Mutism Look Like?

What does selective mutism feel like?

A child or adult with selective mutism does not refuse or choose not to speak at certain times, they’re literally unable to speak.

The expectation to talk to certain people triggers a freeze response with feelings of panic, like a bad case of stage fright, and talking is impossible..

Is selective mutism a form of autism?

Some people confuse selective mutism with autism, but it is important to know that they are not the same disorder. Autism and selective mutism may appear to be similar; when children with selective mutism feel anxious, they often react with a lack of eye contact, a blank expression, and a lack of verbal communication.

What triggers selective mutism?

The cause, or causes, are unknown. Most experts believe that children with the condition inherit a tendency to be anxious and inhibited. Most children with selective mutism have some form of extreme social fear (phobia). Parents often think that the child is choosing not to speak.

How is selective mutism treated at home?

When interacting with a child with Selective Mutism, DO:Allow for warm-up time.Monitor the child’s body language.Talk “around” the child at first with focus on parents or siblings.Get down on the child’s level and focus on a prop.Ask choice and direct questions to the child with focus on the prop.More items…•

How long does selective mutism last?

Symptoms of selective mutism Lasts at least one month – not limited to the first month of school. Failure to speak is not due to lack of knowledge about or comfort with the spoken language.

How do you fix selective mutism?

Among the most effective methods of treating symptoms of selective mutism is CBT. This action-based and problem-solving talking therapy is carried out by highly trained therapists, where you or your older child can benefit from further understanding of the disorder and anxiety in general.

Do adults have selective mutism?

Selective mutism is a severe anxiety disorder that affects both children and adults. It is believed that one in 150* children are affected and it is more common in girls that in boys.

How do you know if you have selective mutism?

Watch for these signs of selective mutism:Frozen or unresponsive manner.Rigid, “stiff as a board” body posture.Expressionless, flat or “deer in headlights” face.Slow to respond in a social situation.Clinginess with parents when entering into social settings.

Is there medication for selective mutism?

What is the preferred medication for SM? Though you may know them as antidepressants, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, or SSRIs, are considered the first-line treatment for anxiety disorders.

Is selective mutism special needs?

Selective Mutism is not a Learning disability, Emotional disturbance, nor a Speech/Language impairment. … In most cases, placement into Special Education settings has been ineffective or damaging, particularly with the Emotionally Disturbed program.

At what age is selective mutism diagnosis?

The average age of diagnosis is around 3 or 4 years old or around the time a child enters a daycare or school setting and the non-speaking behavior becomes problematic (APA, 2000). However, many parents will say that their child displayed signs of excessive shyness and/or inhibition since infancy.

Can you be diagnosed with selective mutism?

A pediatrician, speech-language pathologist, and a psychologist may work together to diagnose and treat the condition. Your child might need a set of different types of treatment. With treatment, most children overcome selective mutism.