Tips for the tongue tied?

I am a big fan of proper annunciation. I enjoy speaking clearly, pronouncing every syllable as it was meant to be said.

Unfortunately, I suffer from a speech impediment, I am tongue tied. For those who may not know, tongue tied (Ankyloglossia) refers to people whose tongue is restricted by a section of muscle or skin underneath the styloglossus (front muscle) holding it to the bottom of the mouth.

By some miracle, this does not affect my English speech, I get by quite nicely sounding like a normal person. However, it does make speaking other languages much harder (Spanish, anyone). For instance, my "R" sound is not created at the tip or midsection of the tongue, as I have been told is the case for normal speakers, but instead relies on the curvature at the back of my throat. I have trouble mainly with the Y, R, and some T sounds. Because my pirate sounds are not created the same way, it makes it hard for me to say many of the following words without sounding like I have a sock in my mouth:

-omöjlig (when I say it, sounds like "omoley")
-tror (when followed or preceded by a Y sound, "troy")

Because of this, I was wondering if there are any Swedes with tongue tie that might be able to help me with these sounds, or anyone who has learned how to overcome similar problems with their Swedish speech.

Tack, John.

June 24, 2016

1 Comment

Our daughter had a friend in kindergarten who was tongue tied - as was her brother. Their pronunciation was horrible and it took me quite some time until I could figure out what they wanted to say. The doctors suggested an operation but the parents were afraid of it, so they went with their children to a speech therapist for quite some time, they did a lot of speaking and tongue exercises at home and in the end both children were able to talk like everybody else.

As you can speak English (as you kind of trained it every day of your life) you for sure can learn those strange Swedish sounds as well with permanent training. Maybe you should ask in some special speech forums for advice. And most of all - don't give up!

Wishing you the best, Storr

June 26, 2016
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