Who Can Treat 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..

Is selective mutism a disability?

One disability not only hidden but most frequently overlooked is Selective Mutism. According to the SMart Center: “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.

Can selective mutism 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.

Do speech therapists treat selective mutism?

Treatment for Selective Mutism. Each person with selective mutism needs to work on different skills. Your doctor may suggest medication, which works for some people. SLPs will work to get your child comfortable talking in all situations.

Is there medication for selective mutism?

Despite limited evidence, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) and monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs) are used to reduce symptoms of selective mutism (SM) in children unresponsive to psychosocial interventions.

How is selective mutism treated in adults?

In order to reach this stage, behavioural therapies used in the treatment of selective mutism in both children and adults include:Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) … Desensitisation. … Shaping. … Positive and negative reinforcement. … Family therapy. … Medication for selective mutism.

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.

Is selective mutism the same as social anxiety?

Selective mutism can be considered as a variant of social anxiety disorder because of the significant overlap in symptoms profile as well as treatment response.

Can PTSD cause selective mutism?

Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) with dissociative features has also been associated as a potential precursor of selective mutism. Although it is an uncommon explanation for selective mutism, several cases of children who experienced severe abuse and trauma fit the classification of selective mutism.

What selective mutism feels 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 caused by trauma?

Studies have shown no evidence that the cause of Selective Mutism is related to abuse, neglect or trauma. What is the difference between Selective Mutism and traumatic mutism? Children who suffer from Selective Mutism speak in at least one setting and are rarely mute in all settings.

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.

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.

Who can diagnose selective mutism?

Diagnosis of selective mutism is mostly on the basis of the patient’s clinical history. A speech-language pathologist (SLP) plays a key role in the diagnosis of the condition. A child who shows signs of selective mutism should be taken to an SLP, apart from a pediatrician and a child psychologist.

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…•