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Why do ADHDers repeat words and noises? Echolalia in Adults

The urge we get to parrot or repeat a word or sound we hear is a form of Echolalia.

Bingo Bongo

It's pretty common for people with ADHD or ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder) to do this amongst each other in a group.

Just about any noise can become echolalia if it tickles the brain right.

  • A car horn

  • Animal noises

  • A popular phrase

  • Words or instruments in a song

  • Sounds from objects moving

  • A word that's fun to say or pronounced uniquely

It's a form of vocal stimming to repeat sounds... It's simply fun and stimulating!

If it has a nice ring to it, it may stick and replay in our brains like a catchy commercial jingle would.

We might feel compelled to mimic inappropriate things at inappropriate times like...

G'day, mate!

Someone's dialect or a phrase that might be very out of context.

Common Echolalia moments:

Repeating words with heavy accents, Saying dialogue from movies/shows out of context, Phrases or noises on loop internally, Mimicking strange noises back and forth with a friend, Getting stuck repeating part of a song

Often when echolalia is discussed, there is a focus on children and their language development. But like ADHD, it's not only limited to childhood. We are just more aware and self conscious of these behaviors as adults.

Learn tools & strategies for LIFE to better manage your ADHD symptoms with my 2-in-1 book/workbook 'Activate Your ADHD Potential'

Later Gator,


Brooke's Activate Your ADHD Potential Book

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