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Only 1 word at 16 months

(11 Posts)
welshhouse Mon 19-Sep-11 12:59:35

I am getting increasingly concerned at my 16 month old daughters lack of words. She can only say 'gone'. She babbles all day long and we talk to her and read to her to try to encourage her to speak but she doesn't seem to want to. She can point, wave and clap and I know she understands a lot but doesn't say any words even though she must recognise some. I hope that she will get there eventually but the more time goes on the more I worry.
Any advice welcome, thanks.

screamingeels Mon 19-Sep-11 13:49:52

DD never really bothered with the single word stage, my Mum says my brother and I didn't either. I think at 18 months she could only say ta-ta (thank you); mummy and daddy, when i get home I can check because despite knowing it was perfectly fine, I obssessed over every word and I've got a list of what she said when. As predicted she just started with two-word combos and then very rapidly into sentences after she was 2 and now is very expressive with a large vocabulary (and funny, and delightful).
So no advice, as long as she understands you and is able to get what she wants you probably shouldn't worry but you probably will.

EFD Mon 19-Sep-11 13:52:54

It can get really concerning, but from what I have seen and read I wouldn't get too worried at all with what you describe. My daughter is 23 months and chatting away endlessly now with 3/4 word "sentences" and a vocabulary of hundreds of words but I'm sure she only had a word or two at 16 months - "no" and something else I forget now!

The normal range is really wide, and if she understands words, points to things and enjoys books and other communication materials I would doubt there's anything to worry about. According to a friend of mine who is a teacher, in fact it's often more intelligent kids who bide their time to start talking much - then when they get going they leap almost straight into proper sentences etc.

alana39 Mon 19-Sep-11 15:11:21

DS3 didn't say anything other than papa and mama (mainly papa) at that age. by 18 months he was trying more, but it was hard to tell what he was saying as everything started with a "d" but finally at 22 months he has a range of words.

FWIW DS2 said hardly anything until nearly 3 then started speaking in grammatically correct sentences and is a very pedantic and very chatty 6 yo grin.

quail Tue 20-Sep-11 20:52:55

I would come to these threads every month with dd2 because she didn't speak until she was over 2 and her sister had been speaking really well from about a year old. Anyway, at about 2 she started speaking in full sentences and all was well and I was stupid to worry and she's about where her sister was at the same age (and they both started stammering at the same age (2.5) and dd1 grew out of it and I assume dd2 will) and it became just one of those things.

With one interesting thing: I started looking at old Flip videos of them that I hadn't watched since taping them, and dd2 aged 11 months is quite clearly talking in them. I know she is because I know the way she talks now and the things she says a lot. She is clearly saying 'Mum! Look!' and perfectly pronouncing the words. And for some reason I just didn't notice. And she gave up.

I think it's because she started talking in such a different way from dd1. With dd1 for months it was nouns, all nouns. Brick, egg, tiger, etc, that was how she built them up. With dd2 it was more functional. Look, there, mine. And she didn't repeat words in the same way, she'd say one and not use it again, so I didn't count it as talking. It all counts. The words your daughter IS USING will not always be clear to you and may not be clear to you unless you have a eureka moment like I did. And maybe I flatter us both with that moment. Please don't worry, she's got a word, she's fine.

bishboschone Wed 21-Sep-11 21:17:20

My dd didn't speak till she was 20 months...she is super bright now in year 3 and just did her maths homework in 3 minutes... Don't worry .smile

notcitrus Wed 21-Sep-11 21:23:44

Ds didn't say anything until nearly 19mo. Then he acquired over a dozen words and half a dozen signs in about 3 days, and by 22mo had over 200 words and short sentences - and the signs were handy when his pronounciation was still ropey as he'd sign and speak at the same time.

The HV who did the 11-month check (aka the 8mo check with a long waiting list!) said only worry if he's not comunicating with eye contact and pointing by 18mo or no words at all by 2... and try not to worry if he had no words at 23mo! Given that shortly after a year he was pointing me all round the house and dragging me down the stairs and along the ground floor to the fridge and then pointing at milk (and me saying and signing MILK... why didn't you just say so...) I tried not to worry, but it was hard!

AngelDog Wed 21-Sep-11 22:58:32

My HV said they 'look for' 5 words at the age of 24 months.

I know plenty of 20 month olds with no words yet, which I think is well within the normal range.

thecaptaincrocfamily Wed 21-Sep-11 23:14:30

I wouldn't worry yet. Like walking they all do things differently. Continue to label things i.e. take around the house and point/ label things/ if she gives something say wow! a ball/ x. Face her when you speak. If she makes a sound like a word say oh, you mean a x iyswim. by 18 months I expect approx 10-20 words, by 2 yo 50 and 2 words together. However, it isn't unusual for children with little speech and good understanding to speak in 2 word sentences from nothing (my own dd2 did this and I worried!). Also if she uses a dummy I would remove it during the day as this limits speaking.

BertieBotts Wed 21-Sep-11 23:18:19

DS didn't say much for ages. He just said "look" for months and months, can't remember when exactly he picked up other words, but at 2, I remember he would put maybe one or two words together if you were lucky, and then he started at the childminder's and suddenly he was talking in full sentences. He's now almost 3 and everyone comments on how good his speech is. We can't shut him up! grin

thecaptaincrocfamily Wed 21-Sep-11 23:21:26

They do change so much ina short space of time. dd2 is now 3.6 and uses words like beautiful, realised, actually, invisible grin. It isn't anything to worry about smile.

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