Quick Answer: Is Selective Mutism A Neurological Disorder?

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..

How can selective mutism help in the classroom?

Teachers can help students with selective mutism by:developing warm, supportive relationships, even if the interactions are nonverbal.easing anxiety in the classroom by pairing them up with a buddy.using small-group instruction and activities.More items…

How is selective mutism diagnosed?

Testing for Selective MutismTalking with you about your child’s development and medical history.Having your child’s hearing screened.Seeing how well your child’s lips, jaw, and tongue move.Seeing how well your child understands what others say to him.More items…

Why does my son talk to himself?

According to child psychologists, it’s common for young kids to talk aloud to themselves as they go about their day—and it shouldn’t be judged as being weird or negative in any way. Typically, this “self-talk” peaks between the ages of three and five, but can persist for longer.

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 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.

What kind of disorder is selective mutism?

Selective mutism (SM) is an anxiety disorder in which a child is unable to speak in some settings and to some people.

Why is selective mutism called?

In 1877, German physician Adolph Kussmaul described children who were able to speak normally but often refused to as having a disorder he named aphasia voluntaria. Although this is now an obsolete term, it was part of an early effort to describe the concept now called selective mutism.

Does selective mutism ever go away?

Selective mutism typically does not go away on its own, and in fact can lead to worsened anxiety and social difficulty if not addressed. Treatment requires a cohesive plan between home and school to produce lasting change.

Is selective mutism a disability?

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.

Is selective mutism a form of anxiety?

ELISA SHIPON-BLUM. Selective Mutism is a complex childhood anxiety disorder characterized by a child’s inability to speak and communicate effectively in select social settings, such as school.

Is selective mutism curable?

The good news is that selective mutism is very treatable with the right care. Kids with SM respond best to behavioral therapy that is focused on helping them learn to speak in new settings, during new activities and with new people.

Is selective mutism a mental illness?

Selective mutism is a severe anxiety disorder where a person is unable to speak in certain social situations, such as with classmates at school or to relatives they do not see very often. It usually starts during childhood and, if left untreated, can persist into adulthood.

How does selective mutism affect the brain?

Brain Studies Studies show that children with selective mutism have a low threshold of excitability in a portion of their brain called the amygdala, which explains most of the behavioral issues these children exhibit. The amygdala senses potential danger by processing signals from the sympathetic nervous system.

What causes selective mutism autism?

The disorder appears to be inherited or linked to family members who have an array of anxiety disorders and/or panic attacks. Due to the ongoing undiagnosed and misdiagnosed cases, it is not possible to determine how many individuals have Selective Mutism.

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.

How do you help someone with selective mutism?

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…•