At a very young age, say between 12 to 24 months of a child’s birth, it is very difficult to say for sure if the child has speech problems. The age at which a child starts talking or even gesticulating as a way of expression may vary from one to another. You will make a mistake if you press the panic button too soon. In the same vein, waiting for too long will not be a good idea, because you may lose out on critical time to address and fix the problem.
Speech Plus experts give you some ideas on how to know if your child has speech impairment and requires speech therapy. To start with, if your child is not waving out or gesturing by the age of 1 year, you have reasons to be worried. On the other hand, if your child continues to use gestures instead of mumbling words by the age of 18 months, you need to consult a speech therapist. Other signs include inability to imitate the speech of adults by the time the child turns of 18 months. Even when the child fails to understand simple verbal questions that demand a yes/no answer, you should look for help.
Signs of Speech Problems?
There are other signs of speech problem when the child turns of 2 years. The child may continue to use gestures and not speech. It may also be the case that the child cannot respond to questions. Some children are not able to say anything more than what their immediate needs are. A nasal or raspy voice is also indicative that the speech progress is far from satisfactory. If the condition persists through the age of 3, you know you need immediate help. However, no matter what the progress has been, if the child’s speech cannot be understood by everyone, including strangers, the child needs a professional speech therapist by all means.
The problem here is the question of denial. Most parents go into a shell of denial when it comes to seeking help from speech therapists. They give it time, expecting the problem to resolve or go away. There is always someone in the family or friend circle who tells them that things are okay and there is no need to panic. The thing is, this kind of misleading advice can undo the residual speech ability of the child. With proper help from speech therapists at the right time, the recovery process can be quick and healthy, say the experts at Speech Plus.