Many people assume that an accent is a way of speaking that is different from their own. In reality, everyone has an accent, even you, and it’s formed by how and where you first learned to communicate verbally. If you find that the way you pronounce words is hampering your ability to communicate clearly, accent reduction or modification can help.
At Celebrations Speech Group, our expert team of speech therapists and speech-language pathologists has extensive experience helping clients with accents that aren’t native to the southern California area.
Here’s a look at when you might consider accent reduction and how we go about changing the way you speak.
As we mentioned, everyone has an accent, which is a way of pronouncing words that’s influenced by any number of factors, including:
In many cases, accents are wonderful indicators — you can immediately identify someone who hails from another region or another country. Perhaps you have a Texas drawl or a British accent that opens doors as people are drawn in by the way you speak.
In other cases, however, accents can influence your communications in not-so-positive ways — people often draw conclusions from your accent or perhaps you have a thick accent that’s not easily understood by others at work or at school.
If you find yourself wishing that your accent weren’t so noticeable or that you could communicate more clearly, accent reduction or modification may be just the ticket.
While we’ve described an accent as the way you pronounce words, it can go much deeper than that. For example, the tone and cadence of your speech may be part of your “accent.” As well, you may place emphasis on certain syllables differently than those around you.
Through our accent reduction or modification, our speech-language pathologists first sit down with you to discuss your goals. Whether you want to simply reduce your accent or you want to blend right into the region, we can help.
After analyzing your speech, we work on different areas, such as:
Through targeted exercises and ample practice, we can alter the way you speak to achieve your goals.
While our speech-language pathologists can lay the groundwork for a modified accent, it’s important that you also commit yourself to the process and practice out in the “real world.” As you learn new ways of pronouncing or emphasizing words, go out and use them as much as you can and, before you know it, this new way of speaking will come naturally to you.
If you’d like to learn more about our accent reduction and modification services, please contact one of our locations in Brentwood, Stockton, or Elk Grove, California, to speak with one of our speech-language pathologists.