From the Publisher
This book lays out a comprehensive plan to improve fluency by controlling the Valsalva mechanism and breaking the Valsalva-Stuttering Cycle. Unlike other therapies, which may have an indirect effect on various aspects of the Valsalva-Stuttering Cycle, Valsalva Control focuses directly on the Valsalva mechanism itself and attacks all aspects of the Cycle - both physical and psychological. It includes specific advice and exercises related to breathing, phonating, and relaxing muscles of the Valsalva mechanism. The goal is not artificially produced fluency, but speech that is free and natural.
The book does not rely on simplistic gimmicks. Instead, its approach requires that we first gain a thorough understanding of what stuttering is and why we do it. Applying insights gained from the Valsalva Hypothesis, it analyzes the symptoms and circumstances of stuttering, the development of stuttering in childhood, the influence of heredity and neurological factors, and the physical and psychological conditions that tend to increase or reduce stuttering. It then discusses the strengths and weaknesses of existing therapies (including drugs and electronic devices), points out the elements that many therapies have in common, shows why most stutterers tend to relapse, and indicates ways in which therapies might be made more effective. (What one reader called "repetitive" was merely the brief restatement of the Valsalva Hypothesis in relation to each of these many aspects of stuttering, in order to make the discussions easier to follow.)
It would be presumptuous to claim that people will be "cured" of stuttering just by reading a book. Nevertheless, this book is sure to provide a deeper understanding of stuttering, as well as effective tools to reduce one's struggle in speaking.