Question: At What Age Is Selective Mutism Diagnosis?

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.

Can selective mutism cause depression?

In the early teenage years, selective mutism is very often compounded by social anxiety disorder. By young adulthood, or earlier, many people with selective mutism will also experience depression and other anxiety disorders, including agoraphobia.

Who can diagnose 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.

Does selective mutism run in families?

The cause of selective mutism is not known. It tends to run in families. A child is more likely to have this disorder if other family members have had problems with selective mutism, social anxiety, or other anxiety disorders. It is not caused by abuse or trauma.

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 there medication for selective mutism?

Abstract. 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.

What happens if selective mutism is left untreated?

Left untreated, selective mutism can lead to isolation, low self-esteem and social anxiety disorder. It can continue into adolescence and adulthood if not managed.

What selective mutism feels like?

Appearance: Many children with Selective Mutism have a frozen-looking, blank, expressionless face and stiff, awkward body language with lack of eye contact when feeling anxious. This is especially true for younger children in the beginning of the school year or then suddenly approached by an unfamiliar person.

How do you help someone with selective mutism?

DOs & DON’Ts for Interacting with Those with Selective MutismAllow 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.Allow for hesitation.Re-ask questions if needed.More items…•

Is selective mutism on the autism spectrum?

Selective Mutism is a Social Anxiety Disorder most commonly found in children and often mistaken and misdiagnosed as Autism. On the surface some of the characteristics may appear to mimic Autistic behaviors.

Can a teenager develop selective mutism?

Girls and boys are both likely to develop this disorder. Symptoms usually appear before the age of five but may become discernable at the beginning of school. Children with selective mutism often have another anxiety disorder, most often a social anxiety disorder.

What age does selective mutism start?

Most children develop selective mutism between the ages of 2 and 4 years old. Despite an early onset, children with selective mutism are not typically identified until school entry and often do not receive professional help until they are 6 to 8 years old.

How do I know if my child has 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.