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Possible speech delay?

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October 13th, 2008, 08:40 AM
SusieQ2's Avatar Jersey Girl
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: New Jersey
Posts: 39,051
My son, Ben, is 16 months old. He is healthy and active but he isn't really talking. The only thing he says is Mama. It's wonderful to hear him say Mama but he doesn't call just me Mama. Everyone he loves is Mama. Even though we say Dada to him a million times a day he won't say it. Dada was his first "word" when he was about 8 months and then he stopped saying it. It was only the Dada sound though he wasn't making the connection to Dada the person.

I've tried working with him with animal sounds that would be easy for him (like Moo for a cow) and he giggles but won't repeat. I name objects all of the time repeatedly. He understands a lot of words and phrases but he just won't say anything.

I know he's still young but I am concerned. My brother had a very severe speech delay. He didn't talk much at all until he was about 4 years old. He is now 25 and still have a severe speech impediment. Because of all I saw my brother go through it makes me even more anxious.

Should I be worried at this point? His Dr said we'll talk again at his 18 month appointment but I feel like 2 more months seems really far away.

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October 13th, 2008, 10:34 AM
fiefer87's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Near Buffalo, NY
Posts: 4,336
It does sound like there is a delay in his expressive language. And given your family history, i would be concerned as well. My recommendation would be to call your Early InterventionProgram. They do not need a doctor's script to evaluate your son. They will come out to your house, evaluate him, and determine if there is a delay. If there is a delay, he will qualify for free services through your EI program.

My dd started speech therapy at 15 months. She had very few sounds and no words. I think the biggest thing she was doing at that time was saying "oooooooooo"

Here is a list of speech milestones from 0-7 years. look it over and see where your son fits best. That will give you a rough idea, but from the way you described him, it does sound like he is delayed.
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October 13th, 2008, 12:42 PM
Dibble's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: NC
Posts: 1,542
At 16 months he should be saying more than mama. However some kids don't start talking until they're around 2 or so and it's in complete sentences. You just never know. Does he know that verbally communicating is important? What I mean is if he points, do you get him what he needs? If so, I would stop. Let him know that verbally communicating will get him what he wants and needs. Even verbally saying anything, when he wants something, is a good start. I had a child who was 3 and not communicating. We really had to baby step it. When he said, "ap" for "apple" he was praised. When he said "b" for "bird" he was praised. He quickly learned that verbalizing was a good thing. Doing the animal noises is helpful. You might want to get a kid's microphone (not the kind that you plug in) and see if that motivates him to verbalize. You start out making a syllable noise and then put the mic to his mouth and see if he will try to imitate. Key thing to remember is you always be the model. Give him lots of models. You can also have a speech eval done for possible therapy. That will help too. Keep us posted.

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October 13th, 2008, 06:31 PM
jenniferleighxo's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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Location: Felton, Delaware
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It's so hard to know as all kids are different. Ryleigh is 15 months and she says 5-8 words. She mimics the sounds of words we say everyday though. Evan has a speech delay and I can already tell the difference between the 2 of them, even at this young of an age. It's never too early to get evaluated with Early Intervention, Keep us updated!
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October 13th, 2008, 08:59 PM
quietsong's Avatar Just Another Slacker Mom
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Missouri
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I agree with everyone! While it might just be that he is a late talker, with your family history, I would absolutely get it looked at ... both for speech and for hearing, if you think there may be a problem there. Make an appointment with his doctor and talk it out! Even if they think there is nothing to be concerned about, then you will know that and not be worrying for 2 months.

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October 14th, 2008, 06:40 AM
SusieQ2's Avatar Jersey Girl
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: New Jersey
Posts: 39,051
Thanks so much for all of your advice. I will try to get a hold of EI here and see what they say!

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