A short-form word cannot be used if it would cause confusion in pronunciation or difficulty in the recognition of an unusual word. Thus, the short form for about is not used in stirabout (a porridge), nor is the short form for said used in Port Said (Sä/eed). However, words like hereabouts, thereabout, gadabout, and roustabout are not considered to be unusual words and the short forms are used.
• Note: What may be unusual to one person may be very common to another. Many of these words have simply developed a traditional braille usage that is familiar to the braille reader.
Occasionally the vocal sound "hmm" is spelled with only one m. In order to avoid confusion with the short-form word for him, in braille an apostrophe is added. Example:
"Hm, him I could do without," she mused.
When hyphens are used to spell this sound (hm-m-m), follow print. Example:
"Hm-m-m, him I could do without," she mused.