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Speech delay? Advice needed.

(4 Posts)
kindlekid Wed 13-Jul-11 16:46:26

My friend and I have similar age children, her dd turned 3 recently and my dd is a couple of months younger.

Friend's dd started saying a few words before my dd was saying anything but while mine has come on in leaps and bounds and is saying full, clear sentences for a while now her's is still mostly babbling with the occasional recognisable word.

Her cousin told her she thinks it would be a good idea for them to get a referral for some speech therapy (her cousin is a junior school teacher) but my friend and her cousin don't get on very well and she took it as a put down and was very upset. I hadn't seen her dd for a while so couldn't give my opinion at the time.

I've met them a few time lately and have to admit I am a bit concerned though. The little girl is 3 now and I struggled to understand anything she said and she is clearly getting very frustrated. Her mum says her behaviour is getting worse too.

The last time I met my friend she asked a lot about dd's speech etc and I sort of downplayed it a bit as I know there is no point in comparing 2 children as they vary so much at this age. I think this probably means she is a bit worried though.

Would you be concerned by this level speech at this age?

Should I say something to my friend and if so how to go about it as she didn't take it well when her cousin mentioned it?


thisisyesterday Wed 13-Jul-11 16:50:32

yes, i would be concerned, and i would say something. the longer she leaves it the more it will affect her child.

she needs to see her Health Visitor, in my experience they are better at doing referrals for SALT and hearing tests than GPs are.
In most areas waiting lists are long, so the sooner she gets a referral done the better.

we are just coming out the other side of this with ds2 who had similar language/speech delay and he's doing great now smile

as for how to approach it... i think you could do worse than just being honest
"X I really don't want to upset you, but I'm worried about DD's speech, have you spoken to anyone about it?"

kindlekid Wed 13-Jul-11 16:58:43

Thanks for your reply. Glad to hear your ds is doing well smile

I have been dwelling on it for a few days now. I don't want it to seem like I think my dd is in some way better than hers but my gut feeling is that there is a (hopefully minor) problem.

BlueArmyGirl Thu 14-Jul-11 21:02:19

As Thisisyesterday said you are right to have concerns. Typically speaking, intelligibility at this age should be quite good - unfamiliar people should be able to understand well over half, in fact more like three quarters, of what a three + year old says.

You could always tell your friend that you've been thinking about what she asked you and you thought that if she had any worries she should get an SLT referral. Perhaps saying that the waiting lists can be quite long (they are round here anyway!) so it's better to do it earlier than later but also saying that if the daughter makes good pogress between referral and appointment she can contact them to say she no longer needs the appointment.

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