Mother wakes up every day with a different foreign accent

A mother who wakes up every day with a different foreign accent claims she suffers racist abuse from strangers.

Michaela Armer from Poulton-Le-Fylde lost her Lancashire accent overnight two years ago, something she believes was triggered by an MRI scan.

Since then, the 47-year-old doesn't know before opening her mouth when she wakes up whether she'll speak in a Chinese, Filipino, South African, Italian, Polish or French accent.

The condition has not only affected her speech – she says the condition has forced her to give up her job as she is left reliant on a wheelchair and suffers tremors.

Now she says she has been subjected to callous supermarket comments and prank Chinese takeaway calls.  

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The 47-year-old can wake up not knowing if she will sound Chinese, Filipino, South African, Italian, Polish or French accent

The 47-year-old can wake up not knowing if she will sound Chinese, Filipino, South African, Italian, Polish or French accent

Ms Armer is one of just a handful of people worldwide who has foreign accent syndrome – a speech disorder that causes a sudden change to speech so that a native speaker is perceived to speak with a 'foreign' accent.

It is thought the rare condition is caused by damage to the part of the brain which controls language.

She said: 'I've suffered from racism all the time over the last couple of years.

WHAT IS FOREIGN ACCENT SYNDROME? 

Foreign accent syndrome is speech disorder that causes a sudden change to speech so that a native speaker is perceived to speak with a 'foreign' accent.

It is most often caused by damage to the brain caused by a stroke or traumatic brain injury.

Other causes have also been reported including multiple sclerosis and conversion disorder.

In some cases no clear cause has been identified.

Speech may be altered in terms of timing, intonation, and tongue placement, so that is perceived as sounding foreign.

Listeners can usually still understand the sufferer's speech; it does not necessarily sound disordered.

Foreign Accent Syndrome has been documented in cases around the world, including accent changes from Japanese to Korean, British English to French, American-English to British English, and Spanish to Hungarian.

There have only ever been 150 confirmed cases of Foreign Accent Syndrome in the world so far. 

'The first time it made cry was in a supermarket back in July 2015 and someone said 'those Polish people are everywhere' – it was awful.

'I've had people say I sound Chinese all the time. I've had people ringing at work laughing down the phone saying 'can I have chicken fried rice?'. It happens all the time.'

'I couldn't say my own name' 

After the MRI scan in May 2015 Ms Armer said she struggled to say her own name 

She regained her speech by singing the infamous 1998 Witch Doctor song as a type of therapy which helped her practise saying vowels.

Ms Armer, who has two children, said: 'Two weeks after the MRI scan I

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