Experts say that the first six months of life are the most crucial in a child’s language development. While children develop these skills at different paces, an estimated 3.3% of kids in the U.S. aged 3-17 have a language disorder.
Speech therapists can help children who are showing signs of a language disorder overcome challenges and improve their communication skills early on. But how do you know whether your child needs the help of a speech therapist? Here are five signs that your child may need speech therapy in Miami.
Around 4-7 months of age, babies babble and start experimenting with different sounds. If your child is especially quiet and not experimenting with sounds, this may be a sign that speech therapy is needed.
At 7-12 months, children also start making gestures, like waving or pointing. However, when children make very few gestures or none at all, this may be another sign of needing speech therapy.
According to the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, lack of babbling and gesturing may indicate a speech and language disorder.
Speech disorders can make it harder for children to produce certain sounds, like the b, p, m, w and h sounds in words. Children aged 2-3 may have trouble pronouncing g, k, d, f or t.
In general, the child’s speech may be hard to understand or unclear.
Around age 2, children start piecing words together to create sentences. Children who do not reach this language milestone may benefit from working with a speech therapist.
Difficulty speaking in sentences or expressing ideas is a sign of expressive language disorder.
Many children have difficulty with stuttering, and speech therapists can help them overcome this issue. Typically, stuttering appears around age 2 or 3 when children are starting to form sentences. However, some children develop a stutter later on.
Although stuttering appears suddenly, parents can look for subtle signs of this issue. For example, if your child is making faces or looks uncomfortable when trying to form a sentence, this may be a sign that stuttering will become a problem.
A speech therapist can work closely with your child to address the issue now before it progresses.
If your toddler is having trouble understanding simple questions and statements, it may be time to meet with a speech therapist. Around age 2, your child should be able to comprehend simple orders or questions.
At this age, children can understand hundreds of words. But if your child doesn’t understand simple statements like “bring me your toy,” this may be a sign of a language disorder.
Language and communication skills are crucial in the modern world. Knowing and recognizing the signs of a language disorder can help ensure your child gets the help they need to overcome these issues early on. Speech therapy addresses speech disorders and communication problems that can delay language development in young children.