Hi all! Hope you are doing well. Today we will be discussing about the treatment options available for speech anxiety. Do you know what speech anxiety is? Glossophobia or speech anxiety is the fear of speaking in public or speaking in general. The term Glossophobia is derived from the Greek word “γλῶσσα glōssa” meaning tongue and “φόβος Phobos”
meaning fear or being afraid.
The symptoms of Speech Anxiety or Glossophobia include heightened anxiety levels before speaking in public or at the thought of the same, avoiding social gatherings, social phobia, and palpitations, blurred speech, disturbed speech, fumbling, instability in speech, feeling thirsty, frequent urination, profuse sweating, isolation, feeling panicky, restlessness, physical distress and mental instability.
Speech anxiety is an overwhelming experience for those who become a victim of it. Its like you want to say something or express your feelings-thoughts-emotions, but you cannot do it due to the anxiety glued to it. The connection between the body and mind does not seem to be in a balance in glossophobia or speech anxiety. Since speech anxiety involves different categories of symptoms viz. verbal, non-verbal, physiological and psychological… Sometimes it is difficult for some to decide the right professional to approach for the treatment of speech anxiety. Due to the different dimensions of problems/symptoms it is challenging to diagnose speech anxiety at the first place.
Therefore, it is very important to consult a mental health professional if you suspect that you are facing speech anxiety symptoms. Here is an overview of the kinds of professionals who can help you to deal with speech anxiety or glossophobia:
With an extensive training and experience in the field of clinical psycho-diagnostics and psychopathology, psychologists are the main health professionals who can help you to overcome speech anxiety with greater efficacy. Psychologists use different kind of psychological therapies and counseling to help you with the same. Some examples of psychological therapies that they use to help people deal with speech anxiety are:
- Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT)
- Behavior therapy
- Exposure therapy
- Client-centered Therapy/counseling
- Family and support therapy (if needed)
- Relaxation training
If the speech anxiety or glossophobia is due to chemical imbalances, neurochemical disturbances or hormonal imbalances, then psychiatrists are the best persons to help you in this regard. Psychiatrists provide pharmacological interventions or medicines to correct the chemical imbalances that may be causing speech anxiety and its co-morbid symptoms.
It is seen that if you have moderate to severe speech anxiety then taking medicines as well as psychotherapies will give you great relief and long-term protection from relapse.
Speech-language Pathologists or speech therapists
Speech therapists or speech pathologists provide therapies to correct the speech or language defects/problems arising due to speech anxiety. If the speech anxiety causes marked fumbling, stammering or stuttering then the speech therapist can help you with fluency shaping techniques along with effective reinforcement strategies.
Vocal/verbal/spoken language trainers
Starting from personality development to confidence building, from vocabulary to articulation, from voice modulation to effectual expression… Vocal or verbal trainers also play a vital role in helping you deal with glossophobia or speech anxiety. They use wide array of methods that would help you to harness your positive skills and groom your personality in a unique and dynamic manner. Other than this vocal trainers also provide training in aspects like how to control your voice and speech in different situations, how to use the right words at the right place, how to build a good vocabulary, how to carry yourself confidently in social situations, how to speak clearly and in an error-free manner, how to influence and mesmerize the minds of the crowd with your speech skills, voice control, word articulation, correct pronunciation… Language/vocal trainers would help you in an all-round manner.
So folks! If you are suffering from speech anxiety or glossophobia then please don’t hesitate to seek help from professional who are already well-equipped and experienced to help you. With the regular practice of therapies and self-improvement, speech therapy can be dealt with in a significant manner.