Early intervention and right management can help children to cope with speech delays easily. Read on to learn more about the 7 signs of speech delay in children.
Different children have unique needs, and your child is different from others. Some children attain developmental milestones fasters, while others take their time. Though this can be a source of constant worry and anxiety for younger parents, some problems can be easily handled with the help of a pediatrician. Some of these disorders may require patience and practice to overcome so it is better to get it treated at an early stage as proper speech is essential for developing language and cognitive skills. Thus, the following signs of speech delay must be intimated to the doctor if observed.
1. Child Unable to Recognize His or Her Name
Infants do not respond only to sound but they also respond to touch and facial expressions. They identify familiar touch and smile when happy. By the age of a few months, they are able to be familiar with his or her name and turn around when called. If your child does not respond even after repeated tries, then maybe she could not hear your voice at all. A slightly older infant will also respond to the different noises around her and can even try to imitate them.
2. He or She Did Not Utter Her First Words
By age one or so, your child should be uttering his or her first words ‘mama’ or ‘dada’ to refer to her parents. You could try talking to him or her about the day and point out nice things you want him or her to see, such as the airplane in the sky, flowers in the garden or the nice dog on a walk. If he or she is unresponsive, you have a reason to be worried.
3. Does Not Babble or Utter Simple Words
By the age of three, most children are fluent with speech though their vocabulary is limited. But children with speech delay might be described as unusually quiet in class and may not want to interact with the friendliest teacher or the class. He or she might take no interest in picture books and does not seem to be interested in airplanes, colorful toys and balloons. He or she can have problems in uttering basic words and in connecting two words or phrases together to make a sentence.
4. Does Not Use Gestures
Toddlers use various gestures to communicate like waving, pointing or shaking their head. If some children do use such gestures they seem to be strangely detached as they are unable to communicate with the rest of the world. Such children would not be found talking to toys while playing and seem disinterested to sound, games, music and toys. You should be worried if your child does not wave hello or goodbye at people, refuses to share or take turns while playing or roll the ball back to you.
5. Does Not Utter or Respond to Simple Instructions
Most young children are able to understand simple instructions such as ‘hello”, “put on your shoes” or “how are you”? If your child does not seem to understand what is being said or prefers to stay quiet, it might be possible that he or she does not want to interact with the stranger. Since he or she has problems in communication, he or she might not want to be separated from her parent and is not interested in making friends.
6. Does Not Express Feelings
During early childhood years, your child should be able to express feelings using appropriate words and sentences. Though not all words would be coherent, you would be able to understand your child’s speech all the same. But if your child shows no signs of hearing or speaking, then it’s time to consult a speech therapist.
7. Diagnosis of Certain Disorders
The possible reasons for a child with speech delay could be hearing loss, developmental delay, autism, Down syndrome which can affect his or her language skills.
Though speech delay is a worrying moment for parents, speech therapists, audiologists and specialists dealing with speech-impaired children who will help them cope up with daily activities. It is always helpful to get their problems diagnosed and treated accordingly so that such children can also live an equally fruitful life.
What are the common signs of speech delay in children? How encourage children to talk early? What are the ways to treat speech delay in children? Discuss here.
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- The Indiaparenting Team