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To worry my DC doesn't know any words yet?

(46 Posts)
Whothefuckfarted Thu 18-Jul-13 10:44:08

Dc is 16 months old, makes lots of noises/shrieks etc, babbles frequently (more so when tired) has been saying dadada for a long time but I don't think she knows yet that Daddy is dadada IYKWIM? I couldn't say 'oh yes DC knows that's daddy and she calls him dadada' or 'she says nana when she wants a banana' I'm hoping you all understand what I am trying to say. Sorry if it's a bit confusing..

She also does a lot of.. squirming? I'm not sure how to describe it... it's like when she gets excited it comes out in her body movements and facial expressions. A lot. I've not seen another baby's face and body move like that so often.

When did your DC's say their first word in the right context? Any other people's babies bodies get excited?

CheeseFondueRocks Thu 18-Jul-13 10:54:29

I'm sure she knows words as understands what you talk to her about? Follows commands?

She just doesn't actively produce the words yet because she can't make the right sounds yet.

DD is 17 months and understand everything (in two languages) apart from prepositions that I or DH say to her but her production is still quite limited. So no need to worry.

CheeseFondueRocks Thu 18-Jul-13 10:57:21

DD did say the right words for mama, dada and kaese (cheese in German) when she was 12 months but every baby is different.

Btw, if she says nana when she wants a banana, that counts as a proper word. It's about using the same word in the same context iyswim. Animal noises count as well.

HoldingHigh Thu 18-Jul-13 10:57:39

If your that worried have a word with your HV. One of mine hardly said a word at 16 months - instead choosing to point at what they wanted. Another of mine you couldn't shut up lol. All kids develop at different rates.

But if you feel worried maybe a chat to your HV or GP would be good idea.

Anomaly Thu 18-Jul-13 11:00:07

Does she understand you? None of mine talked early but I knew they understood a lot of what I said so was never that worried. My youngest is 16 months and only knows a few words. Very like my older two at the same age and at 3 and 6 they're perfectly normal.

Whothefuckfarted Thu 18-Jul-13 11:00:09

She knows what it means when I say 'no' or her name in the 'no' tone.

I don't think she really follows commands though..

Example: We have a red sensory ball which we pass back and forth playing catch sort of thing. But if I line it up with a few other toys and say 'get the ball' she wouldn't know what toy I want her to get. (or she's just ignoring me) I can't be sure...

MrsSparkles Thu 18-Jul-13 11:02:58

My LO barely said a word at 16 months - mainly dada! At 22 months she suddenly started talking and now at 26 months I can't shut her up! But she could understand me at 16 months, basic instructions at least.

Agree if you're worried have a chat with the HV.

Whothefuckfarted Thu 18-Jul-13 11:03:03


No, she doesn't say 'nana' when she wants a banana. She hasn't used a word in context at all.

She's only just started to point at things in the last week or two, doesn't point often, and no words with the pointing.

cozietoesie Thu 18-Jul-13 11:03:16

My mother took my brother to the Doctor when he was 15 months old because he wasn't saying more than a couple of words. (She was used to me and I'd said my first grammatically correct sentence at 11 months - always was a wordy blighter. grin)

The Doctor just laughed himself silly. In a nice sort of way, apparently.

Don't worry - once he starts, you'll be on here asking how to shut him up. (Until he reaches 14 and starts communicating through grunts again.)

cozietoesie Thu 18-Jul-13 11:04:41

Ah sorry - it's a DD. It won't be grunts then. It will be sighs.


Whothefuckfarted Thu 18-Jul-13 11:05:24

Anyone got any input on the 'squirming'? or is that normal?

Whothefuckfarted Thu 18-Jul-13 11:06:12

grin cozie I did a lot of sighing still do I think lol

gordyslovesheep Thu 18-Jul-13 11:08:37

to be fair OP no one here can 'diagnose' anything wrong here - if you are seriously concerned talk to your HV or GP

all children are different and without seeing or communicating with your child no one over the interweb can answer your question

CheeseFondueRocks Thu 18-Jul-13 11:12:07

Sorry OP, I misunderstood your first post.

What does the red book say for milestones?

I seem to remember I was quite surprised how little was expected in the relevant age groups, so I would be surprised id the HV thought your DD was behind. I'd ask though if you feel worried.

I was told DH was a late speaker, didn't say a word until almost 2 but then he came out with sentences immediately. They all have their own system of developing speech.

riojabotherer Thu 18-Jul-13 11:12:38

My 20 month old hasn't yet anything discernible but his sounds are changing week on week and for months there hasn't been damn thing I've said that he hasn't (apparently) fully understood. Not worried, just weary of waiting! If I couldn't tell there wasn't a lot going on in there I would be concerned, but if we haven't had words by 24 months I plan to get things checked out.

If you're worried do mention it to the HV and perhaps have his hearing checked to start with.

They're all different but follow your gut instinct.

Whothefuckfarted Thu 18-Jul-13 11:13:10


I'm not seriously concerned, I'm asking what age your child first used a word in context.

I only started thinking about it yesterday . Thought asking here was okay.

You haven't added anything constructive here at all. Go annoy someone else if you don't want to actually answer the questions asked.

riojabotherer Thu 18-Jul-13 11:14:10

Sorry her, not his!

digerd Thu 18-Jul-13 11:20:15

My DD said her first word at 9 months, ' more' but was only when feeding her grin. It was after the age of 18 months that her speech developed gradually.

BeeWi Thu 18-Jul-13 11:22:32

Hi Who. I would perhaps have a word with your HV or doc next time you see them.

Do they have hearing screening in the UK as a matter of course for babies? I have a 16 month old girl and she has quite a few words now, as do the other babies in our circle of mum/baby friends. One who has been a bit slower to make sounds has no hearing in one ear at the moment, so there's stuff been put into place for him to sort that.

I don't mean to worry you by saying that, I would personally have it checked out though, just in case.

Whothefuckfarted Thu 18-Jul-13 11:31:02

She had her hearing checked at the hospital 4 days after she was born. All fine. Not had one since. I'll make an appointment and mention it to the HV while there. I'll probably have to video her doing the excited body movements as she would probably just cling to me and be all shy at the doctors office.

I honestly didn't give it a second thought until yesterday when we were skyping my mum and she kept on saying 'what's all that squirming about haha' every time my DC did it. DC's always done it. When I googled a bit it up came a lot of stuff about the autistic spectrum, made me think how she's not used a word properly yet.

PoppyAmex Thu 18-Jul-13 11:33:50

Who DD is turning 16 months tomorrow and the only thing she says is "mama" but I'm sure she doesn't connect the word to anything.

I know she understands a number of different sentences as she reacts appropriately, but she just shows no interest in communicating.

Her whole life was about being mobile/crawling/walking/climbing and now running and walking backwards hmm She also doesn't point.

I spoke to a family member who is a Paediatrician and he laughed at me, as did my DM who was a Paediatric Psychiatrist for almost 40 years.

Whothefuckfarted Thu 18-Jul-13 11:38:02

That's reassuring poppy thanks. My DC has met the physical milestones she's meant too, she's not quite walking alone yet but it won't be long.

The red book just says at 1 year she should be making noises and respond to her name which she did at the time and still does. The next set of 'things your kids should do' is at 2.5 years so not really applicable yet.

iclaudius Thu 18-Jul-13 11:42:00

No - do not worry
My kids are all slow talkers but oddly academic - please enjoy this time and try not to to worry
My baby is also 16 months and says nothing - he's a happy boy and has also only recently pointed
He doesn't walk either
He smiles and laughs a lot and if I'm honest with myself I think he'll be - akin to Einstein fine wink

Fakebook Thu 18-Jul-13 11:46:32

I've been worrying about this too. DS is 18m and only says daddy and tatoo (thank you). He understands some commands and stuff but at the moment everything (including daddy) is called daddy and whenever I give him something he says tatoo. Dd was already using small sentences at this age.

meganorks Thu 18-Jul-13 11:49:31

I wouldn't worry. Sounds normal to me. These babies all do things in their own time. Dd said 'row row row' to me one day c 10 months whilst pushing a book to me that had 'row your boat' in it. Wow I thought - she is already starting to talk. Then nothing (except muma, dada) for another 10-12 months. She clearly understood a lot as would respond to things we said but just didn't want to talk. Then while on holiday started trying to say words and just added more and more everyday. So 22 months when on holiday
Now nearly 2 and running commentary for everything!

PoppyAmex Thu 18-Jul-13 11:51:08

I've been a lot more worried about pointing, must ask DM.

She has never pointed at anything, but then again neither do we confused Should we be modelling this?

When she wants something she stares at it and flaps her arms continuously.

Is pointing a huge milestone?

Whothefuckfarted Thu 18-Jul-13 11:54:35

poppy grin at the flapping, my DC does this. I don't think pointing is a milestone, but since I noticed her point the first time (at bright toys in home bargains) I now point thing out and say what it is. (starting with daddy seeing as she can say that)

Isitme1 Thu 18-Jul-13 11:56:39

Not read the full thread but didnt want to read and run.
My ds didnt even say mama until a few months before his 2nd birthday (this time last year) hes 3 in September and my word his speech has come on a dream.
He still babbles when he gets too excited but otherwise hes saying 3-5 word sentences. 1 of my favourites which is a recent one is its not punny mama. Lmao. And im not having it when he doesn't want anything.
Nursery helps a hell of a lot.

Shrugged Thu 18-Jul-13 11:57:54

My 15 month old babbles like mad - this week he seems obsessed with 'p' and 'b' sounds, which is new - but I couldn't honestly say he really has any words. Occasionally Dada or Mamma, or car, and I swear I have heard him say helicopter once or twice, but nothing else. It never occurred to me to be worried. I know he understands a lot, and he'll talk when he's ready. I'd chat to your GP if you are really concerned, OP, but fpnothing you have said would ring alarm bells for me.

Mapal Thu 18-Jul-13 11:58:28

My DS didn't start saying much until after he turned 2. His friend on the other hand was saying sentences by 16 months. I did worry a bit too but when it did start coming it came quickly.
Not sure about the squirming thing, sorry. No harm in mentioning all this to.your HV . I bet it's just one of the many variations of normal, some kids are working at improving different skills at different times, the other skills will catch up later.

JacqueslePeacock Thu 18-Jul-13 12:00:05

If you are worried about autistic spectrum and the squirming, could you try having a look at the MCHAT? You can find it easily online.

FredKiller Thu 18-Jul-13 12:09:31

My DS went through a phase of sort of twiddling his feet and hands around and around when he was excited (usually in the presence of food!) which I worried about. He was prob about 7/8mo. I spoke to the HV about it and she said it was just his way of expressing excitement, because he can't talk yet. Sure enough, it abated as he started to talk (although he was about 12mo so younger then your DD).

What I'm trying to say is that maybe the squirming is related to not speaking yet and is just her way of expressing excitement in place of any words.

HahaHarrie Thu 18-Jul-13 12:12:17

No it doesn't matter, it doesn't mean anything so try not to worry. Don't compare your baby to others. There is a healthy range which babies learn to walk, talk amongst other things. 16mths is still very young. You and she don't need the pressure. Just enjoy her for how she is.

pinkpanther79 Thu 18-Jul-13 12:13:39

Don't worry at all. If she's babbling she's getting it (and might have words that you dont recognise as such yet. If she's squirming a lot it might be that she's concentrating on some physical move that interests her more than talking.

My DD is 18 months and only uses 'fun' words like has or ball so lots of animal noises but nothing useful like hungry or thirsty. She points for this.

I think she's so used to getting her own way without words she only learns for fun. Use what she loves!

Fresh01 Thu 18-Jul-13 12:14:10

My DC3 was a boy and a later speaker compared to my first two girls. DC1 was talking in sentences just after 18 months.

My HV said at 18 months so long as he was understanding what I saying she wasn't concerned. At 2 she looked for him to have 20 words used in context - he did. Just after his 2nd birthday he suddenly started chatting away in sentences and now at 3.5 can't be shut up.

DC4 is 19 months has about 20 words in context but understands most of what you tell her. She will try sounding things at you, say zoo and she says ooo.

As with everything in kids development they are all different. Just keep repeating the same words and keep sentences simple.

My DC4 if excited gets a huge smile and shakes her arms if that is what you mean by squirming? Have seen other little kids do it too as an expression of excitement. We just think it is cute.

JacqueslePeacock Thu 18-Jul-13 12:17:02
Whothefuckfarted Thu 18-Jul-13 12:22:49

fresh I always thought the squirming I described as excitement and nothing else.

Dc does copy sounds I make we will both see who can do the loudest shriek or longest. She will also copy me when I say dadada, (if she feels like it)

thanks for the mchat link

HoratiaNelson Thu 18-Jul-13 12:25:50

I think 16 months is too young to be worrying. One of my DC had only two words by his 2nd birthday, but could speak fluently by 3 and now is often described as articulate - think he was saving up his words until he was ready to strong them altogether, whereas other children seem to pick it up one word at a time. I wouldn't worry too much, as long as it seems she can hear you when you talk to her.

SummerMyArse Thu 18-Jul-13 12:26:36

DS babbled for ages (still does). I'd get excited cos he'd say mama then he'd call everything and everyone mama and I realised it was just his sound of the day/week.

His first real word was no. Aged 19 months I think. He is now 21 months and still says no to almost every question, even if he means yes!

His first real contextual word was at 20 months. "Door". The least useful word imaginable!

His word count is now up to 5 or 6 words, I actually thought it'd progress faster but DS has other ideas!

as for squirming, DS doesn't squirm, but does play about with his tongue and cheeks making lots of different sounds which don't mean anything but he just seems to enjoy it.

quesadilla Thu 18-Jul-13 12:28:47

I think people seriously underestimate the degree of variation in the ages children pass these milestones.

My dd only had one word at that age -- Daddy -- but now, at 2 years 4 months, speaks in full sentences. While my friend's son who is just a little younger than her, has only a handful of words and those words he does speak are barely recognizable.

On the other hand he is much more physically adept than her and far more socially gregarious.

You will find also that the development process isn't always a smooth curve. My dd suddenly went through this quantum leap in speaking that took place over a period of about two months. She went from not being verbal at all to speaking clear sentences.

I think there's almost certainly nothing to worry about, but I'd run it past an HV just for your own peace of mind, just so you know its being kept an eye on.

stopgap Thu 18-Jul-13 12:33:20

Mine only said "That?", "Dadda" and "Dog" when we went for our 18-month check-up.

He's now 23 months and still speaks in a lot of babble, but he has close to 100 words. He still can't say his own name (he can't do "L" sounds) and most of his words only I understand ("smah" for smoothie, "pan" for pancakes, "eh" for elephant etc.) but as long as it's an approximation of the real word, my doctor says it counts as a word.

I can also have long exchanges with my son using his limited vocabulary, so I know that his understanding of language and the environment is excellent.

By contrast, my friend's son (2.3) still only has one word, but that's not the real issue. He appears to understand little, doesn't point, and can't follow simple commands, such as bring your shoes. He's currently being assessed for autism.

If your daughter follows commands, points etc. then that's your key concern for now.

shewhowines Thu 18-Jul-13 12:38:54

Mine never babbled at all and were slow to say words, but when they did start speaking it was full sentences almost immediately.

Give it some more time. Do try the pointing and saying the words though. Ask her where things are. if she can't show you just point or touch it yourself and say there it is etc. Also comment on what you and they are doing even if it is really mundane. like " thats' a big red car you are playing with" or "mummys doing the washing up now" or "does that apple taste good?" just keep chatting away.

I'd be more worried if she doesn't seem to understand you. It was obvious mine understood things, way before they actually spoke. Seek advice from the HV if you are worried.

Whothefuckfarted Thu 18-Jul-13 12:49:47

Definitely going to start putting a much more concentrated effort into it. But don't want to turn into an LP/PP grin

Never been bothered with comparing or worrying at all before as I know how diverse childrens development can be. I saw an 8 month old walking, and a one year old who isn't crawling yet. All normal.

Will still be booking a wee appointment to note it with the HV/doctor.

kelda Thu 18-Jul-13 12:52:53

My dd1 didn't say her first word in context until the age of 18 months. It was 'plane', while pointing to the sky. Mama/papa came soon afterwards.

She was behind for a few years until we realised she had a hearing problem whihc was sorted with grommets.

Whothefuckfarted Thu 18-Jul-13 13:03:53

Thanks for all the input (minus gordy lol) Definitely a few things to think about.

Whothefuckfarted Thu 18-Jul-13 14:24:54

She does know the word 'hiya' and 'bye' as well (I think), she does wave after I've said those words, even without the action of waving.

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