​Glossomania (speech Disorder): Causes, Symptoms And Treatment

The ability to communicate through oral language, or commonly known as speech, is the physical medium through which most human beings communicate.

This speech is the sound execution of language and one of the ways in which its participants perceive the intentions and content of the other.

But sometimes this ability is truncated due to neurological problems, or certain psychopathological disturbances, among others. In these cases, alterations appear in verbal communication such as glossomania, in which the person is capable of producing verbal discourse but without any communicative value

What is glossomania?

If the word glossomania is dissected according to its etymological roots, it is observed that it is made up of two Greek roots: glossa whose current translation would be language and the suffix mania which is interpreted as having an obsession, obsessive impulse or pathological habit and passionate hobby.

From these roots it can already be intuited that its meaning will be related to altered or distorted oral language production.

In the field of psychology and psychiatry, glossomania refers to the development of language in a way in which linguistic units, such as lexemes, phonemes, morphemes and sentences, are selected unconsciously by the subject and combined based on coincidences. phonological or semantic, and not according to a coherent order of meaning.

These types of elaborations are typical of certain psychopathological conditions trance states or neurological problems produced by different causes such as tumors or poisoning.

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Glosomania vs glossolalia

Although both coincide in the fact that they are alterations in language production linked to psychiatric disorders, unlike glossomania, glossolalia consists of the fluid vocalization of an intelligible language, composed of words that the patient invents and more rhythmic and repetitive sequences. typical of children’s speech; creating a discourse in which practically everything is neologisms.

As a curious fact, in some religious beliefs this alteration is known as the “gift of tongues.” ; considering the speeches as a divine language unknown to the speaker, and which places the person who executes it as chosen by said divinity or divinities.

Speech in mental illness

A characteristic of some mental illnesses is that people are not able to maintain a conversation or make any type of speech with apparently logical connections between words and expressions; It is very difficult for the patient to communicate, and for the listener to understand the ideas, facts and wishes that he or she is trying to communicate.

Generally, incoherent speech is not considered a language problem, but rather a problem of another dimension The first impression that these alterations provide is that of being a communication problem, that is, pragmatic; initially observing a difficulty in interacting with others and with the environment.

For a person to be able to communicate orally or make any type of speech, it is necessary that all cognitive skills are well founded, given that this is produced and understood at a level of language processing that requires it.

Likewise, the previous conditions of attention, memory, knowledge of the context and of the interlocutors are absolutely necessary for successful oral correspondence. If all these conditions are not met, language becomes something poor and limited, or an uncontrolled and incoherent source of words. This last alteration is what occurs in glossomania.

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In any case, glossomania in itself does not constitute a psychiatric disorder, but rather is a symptom of disorders such as neurosis and schizophrenia; being the result of an alteration in the organization of thought. That is, an adulteration of the selection, arrangement and expression of what the person wants to communicate.

Glossomania in schizophasia

Glossomanic schizophasia is an extremely surprising and very rare disorder, being more typical of patients with a high cultural level.

1. Schizophrenic glossomania

In this type of schizophrenia, the expression can become abundant and fluid, which requires the attention and participation of the viewer to become understandable.

If you pay attention to the patient’s speech, you notice changes at the word level but, in addition, There are also alterations at the sentence level The following can be observed in these people.

Incomprehensible neologisms

They are neologisms that the person creates and that are not usually easily understood. They are often recently pronounced words and vary in both phonetic and semantic content. In addition, they can include formations from opposite words, such as “it is black and white” instead of “it is gray.”

This language created by the patient can even be entire sentences. Although few patients manage to execute this skill, which some experts call “hyperphasia.”

Some experts theorize that these intellectually gifted people, faced with comprehension difficulties and the speeches of other people that are incomprehensible from their point of view, concentrate only on their own speech, creating the aforementioned glossolalia.

Deviations in lexical compositions

In these deviations the patient creates compositions of two words that normally do not form a compound. Like “I need an ink pen.”

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Deviations in morphemic compositions

In this case the semantic potential of the sentences is relatively understandable. For example: “I’ve been paginating all day,” instead of “I’ve been reading all day.”