Home > Common Disorders > Cluttering


Author: Beth Morrisey MLIS - Updated: 25 September 2012 | commentsComment
Cluttering stuttering stammering

Cluttering is a speech disorder that affects the fluency of speech. Unlike other disorders those who suffer from cluttering are sometimes not even aware of their condition or precisely when they clutter their speech. Most members of the general public are not aware of cluttering as a recognised speech disorder either. Below are some answers to frequently asked questions about cluttering.

What is Cluttering?

Cluttering occurs when an individual’s speech accelerates to a more rapid pace than normal, when the individual (often unconsciously) repeats syllables or phrases, and/or when an individual goes back to repeat things multiple times in an effort to make his or her speech more clear. When these occur, the individual’s speech literally becomes cluttered.

What are the Causes of Cluttering?

There is no single cause of cluttering, and in fact there may be medical causes of cluttering that are unique to the individual. Conditions that affect concentration may be related to an individual’s cluttering, and there may even be some prescription medications that are used to treat independent illnesses or conditions that could also bring about cluttering as a side effect. The use of alcohol or drugs such as marijuana/cannabis may also influence cluttering.

Does Cluttering Ever Go Away?

If cluttering is brought on by alcohol, drugs or prescription medication then it may go away when these substances are no longer being used. If cluttering is associated with another condition, it may be alleviated in line with the progress of that condition. Some individuals affected by cluttering, however, will deal with it indefinitely.

Can Individuals Affected by Cluttering Communicate?

Of course. Like stuttering or stammering, cluttering simply means that verbal communication is less efficient than it might be otherwise. Cluttering certainly does not preclude an individual from communicating, but it may mean that (s)he will need to consciously slow his or her speech and think through what (s)he would like to say. Stress may have an adverse effect on cluttering, so all efforts to stay relaxed while communicating should help, though at the very least they won’t hurt.

What If Speaking is Difficult for Someone with Cluttering?

Speaking will be difficult for someone affected by cluttering, but this does not mean that others should shy away from speaking with him or her. Instead, others should be sure to allow the individual as much time as is necessary for him or her to complete a communication. Others should avoid interrupting someone with cluttering, and should not finish his or her sentences. If others cannot understand something due to cluttering, they should be honest about it and continue to communicate until both parties are clear.

Is there a Cure for Cluttering?

No, there is not a single recognised cure that will stop all cases of cluttering. However, speech and language therapy is usually useful in overcoming cluttering to a certain extent, and cluttering that is associated with another condition or substance may be alleviated in line with the recovery of that condition or when the substance is no longer ingested.

You might also like...
Leave a Comment, Ask for Advice or Share Your Story...
I'm 34, and I have suffered from cluttering my entire life. But was not aware of the actual condition until recently. This problem has been the point of contention for me in many circumstances. Many people have to aske me to slow down when talking. It seems my thoughts come to me faster than I am able to convey them in spoken or written language. As a result I come across as someone with disorganized thinking, sloppy handwriting and strange ideas. It is worse when I am stressed out. It has even hurt me in court when I have given testimony becasue it seems like my testimony is inconsisten, when really I jst have trouble getting my thoughts across to others without confusing descriptions or tripping over myself to back up and start over. When I first discovered that a "condition" that described my problem actually existed, I cried with relief that I was not alone. No one likes to think their is something worng with them- unlikesome, I have been aware of my problem for many years and have been searching for answers. I am definately an clutterer. I have found that diet afects it and it is worse when I eat lots of sugar or junk food. Stress also makes it worse. It has come to the point that when I am unser the gun, I avoid talking to people becasue I am afraid of what I will say or how I will come across to others. I am wondering if there is a support group out there.
clutter bug - 9-Nov-11 @ 2:16 PM
Hi, I'm 26 and have always had a slight problem with my speech, i've noticed it getting slightly worse over the past few years so thought I'd find out if there is actually a name for my problem and how to go about treating it, if possible. Reading the information above I'm pretty sure I suffer from cluttering. How do I find out how to deal with it? would my local GP be any use?
brewis - 11-Apr-11 @ 10:48 PM
Leave a Comment, Ask for Advice or Share Your Story...
(never shown)
(never shown)
(never shown)
(never shown)
Enter word:
Our Quick Links
Latest Comments
  • evets
    Re: Neurological Disorders
    I have a friend that just recently developed a speech proble.Problem is she can understand what your saying fine but when she speaks it…
    29 May 2015
  • SpeechDisorder
    Re: Receptive Language Disorders
    @kez27 - Sorry to hear your daughter has been under stress. I'm afraid I can't advise on this as each child and each case is…
    27 March 2015
  • kez27
    Re: Receptive Language Disorders
    My daughter aged 10 was diagnosed with stress due to the amount of pressure put on her from SATS. She was referred to a speech and…
    26 March 2015
  • SpeechDisorder
    Re: Communication Boards
    @jeannie - I am sorry to hear this and I'm sure things will begin to improve for you. You may be able to get help and support from the Stroke…
    20 March 2015
  • jeannie
    Re: Communication Boards
    I had a sudden stroke about two years ago which left me unable to talk - think about commuters - this has taken me about half hour to wrIte…
    18 March 2015
  • SpeechDisorder
    Re: Dysarthria
    @jo - sorry to hear this, we couldn't really advise as it is quite specific. However, as specified in the article medical professionals experienced in any…
    24 February 2015
  • Sam
    Re: Lisps
    @Oak - I'm glad you feel comfortable with yourself, it's only when we are young that we feel these things as we want to fit in. As we get older we want to be…
    30 January 2015
  • Oak
    Re: Lisps
    I have the hugest lisp ever, it's been that way since ever. I used to hate it and for the longest time I wanted to get rid of it, but not anymore. I feel it's…
    29 January 2015
  • SpeechDisorder
    Re: Phoniatrics
    @Rona Gilbertson - I can only suggest you make sure that you follow it up with your GP and ask to see a consultant if you think your problem is steadily…
    29 January 2015
  • Rona Gilbertson
    Re: Phoniatrics
    I've been getting worse with Dysarthria for about a year plus, to date. It surely making me less social. From a garrulous speaker, I am silent. What can…
    27 January 2015
Further Reading...
Our Most Popular...
Add to my Yahoo!
Add to Google
Stumble this
Add to Twitter
Add To Facebook
RSS feed
You should seek independent professional advice before acting upon any information on the SpeechDisorder website. Please read our Disclaimer.