When your 3-year-child isn’t talking yet, don’t be afraid. Sometimes children are seen slower at developing speech than others and that keeps worrying their parents. It’s quite natural that parents get immediately concerned.
But the fact is, there are some children who may be early talkers while others may be late bloomers. Sometimes a speech and language delay can overlap.
And if so, what are the next steps you or the parents should be taking?
Usually, a child of 3-years old tends to increase up to 1000 words and can speak in 3-and-4 word sentences. Unless a child is achieving such milestones, the child is either a late bloomer or may have a speech or language delay.
What is Speech and Language Delay?
A speech delay refers to the use of words and phrases by a child to express ideas that are hard to understand when a language delay in a child refers to a condition of a child saying words well but only putting two words together.
Signs of Speech & Language Delay:
A child who doesn’t respond to sound or vocalize should be diagnosed by a speech language therapy doctor. However, it’s often hard for parents to identify if their child is taking a bit longer to reach a speech or language milestone, or if it’s a problem.
Let’s note what parents should watch for:
- If their child isn’t using gestures, such as pointing or waving bye-bye by the age of 12-months
- If a child prefers gestures over vocalizations to communicate by 18-months
- Child has trouble in imitating sounds by 18-months
- If their child has trouble in understanding simple verbal requests
- A child can only imitate speech or actions and doesn’t utter words or phrases spontaneously by 2-years
- If their child utters some sounds or words repeated and can’t use oral language to communicate for their immediate needs by 2-years
- A child can’t follow simple directions by 2-years
- If their child has an unusual tone of voice (such as raspy or nasal sounding) by the age of 2-years
Parents should see pediatric speech therapy doctor if their they find their child’s speech is harder to understand than expected for their age:
- Parents and regular caregivers should understand about 50% of a child’s speech at 2 years and 75% of it at 3 years
- By 4 years old, a child should be mostly understood, even by people who don’t know the child
What Causes a Speech or Language delay?
There are factors like oral impairment and short frenulum or the fold beneath the tongue that can limit tongue movement. The most common causes of speech or language delay are hearing loss, slow development, and intellectual disability while other causes include psychological deprivation, autism (a developmental disorder), elective mutism (when a child doesn’t want to talk), and cerebral palsy (a movement disorder caused by brain disorder).
How is a Speech and Language Delay Diagnosed?
See a speech language therapy doctor who can help you recognize speech and language delay and tell you the cause of your child’s issue and talk to you about treatment options.
With speech and language therapy, several related disorders, such as articulation disorders, fluency disorders, resonance disorders, receptive disorders, expressive disorders, cognitive-communication disorders, dysphagia or swallowing disorders, stammering or stuttering disorders, etc. can be treated.
Pediatric Speech Therapy
Speech therapy for children may be the only treatment needed if speech is the only developmental delay, It offers an outstanding outlook. A child may have normal speech by the time they enter school with an early speech language intervention program.
At Hope AMC, a leading pediatric medical facility in Dubai, the early and intensive speech language intervention therapy program may include:
- Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) Program
- PECS (Picture Exchange Communication System) to develop spontaneous, intentional communication and enable them to use language for different reasons
- Lego Therapy
- Hanen and Intensive Interaction
- Social Thinking and Zones of Regulation
- PROMPT (Prompts for Restructuring Oral Muscular Phonetic Targets) Therapy
- Feeding Therapy
The speech language therapists at Hope AMC will work directly with your child, as well as instruct you on how to help. PROMPT, Hanen Program, Michael Palin Parent Child Interaction Program, and Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) are their speech-language therapy techniques.
What can Hope AMC Speech Therapists in Dubai do for Your Child?
They will use proven approaches that require your child to communicate and will teach them the power of communication.
Get in touch with pediatric speech-language therapy doctors in Dubai today!