19 month old speech development concern(13 Posts)
I hate to sound like a milestone obsessed Mum as I know all children develop at different rates. However my 19 month old son does not speak, he doesn't say any words at this point. He has a lot of cousins so plays well, he has a range of toys, my husband and I play with him and he loves books. We go out regularly to the beach, park and children's play areas.
At his 1 year development check the health visitor was really happy with his understanding. As parents we are too ie with his basket of bath toys he will pick the correct animal, he points to the correct objects we ask in his A-Z book etc.
I am a SENCO in a primary school part time. Yesterday I met with a speech and language therapist and during our conversation she mentioned her daughter struggling with her speech from a young age. I mentioned the above about my son and she said that really he should be speaking. She said to ensure we emphasise the words of objects and not just praise him for pointing to or getting the object.
My husband is quite upset when I have tried talking to him about this as he was bullied a great deal at school for his speech and he received many blocks of speech therapy.
I work three days a week and my son is with my husband for one of those days and my Mum for the other two so he is not yet attending Nursery.
Any advice would be great please. Wait a little longer? I know I can self-refer to our local Speech and Language centre or would it be beneficial to seek the advice of a health visitor first?
Sorry for the long message, I want to give as much info to you as I can. Thank you.
Does he babble and make noises? Does he make animal noises or 'brrrmm' for a car etc? Does he have any problems drinking from an open cup, or chewing food?
I think the speech therapist you met was a bit off saying this when she hadn't met your son, and when I have sat in on speech sessions with parents, SALTs are usually very cautious to be very categorical in their speech (eg 'should be talking by now')
I don't know what issue your dh had with his speech, but speech therapy has probably moved on a lot since he had therapy. The children I sit in with (preschoolers) love their sessions, and we incorporate bits into their day as part of games and playing. My Ds's speech therapy is done as part of his school day.
However I think if you are concerned you could call the speech and language advice line and talk to your HV.
Does he babble and have his own personal words?
Does he make noises like "brrr" when playing with cars?
He does sound like he is a little behind in his development with speech but does sound like he is within the right development age for listening and understanding
Given his dad's history it maybe that a referral is needed, but it probably is a little too early for that at the moment
Sometimes with children development is not universal in all areas and some children do have delays. These children can have a real jump in development and they catch up
I would be inclined to wait until he is 2 and then speak to your hv or gp about a referral to the speech therapist
I work in early years and I have never heard of any child receiving speech therapy before 2
There are good sites on the internet that have lots of good advice
Ican is very good
I'm a SALT and suggest you should self refer now if that option is available in your area.
You might find this progress checker useful (and the website has tips about speech development)
Thank you all so much for your quick response and helpful advice.
He does babble and most of the time sounds like "dug a dug a dug a". He feeds himself with cutlery and drinks from an open cup. He absolutely loves cars and does "brrrrrr" in fact that is the noise we hear the most! Bless him.
I think it's so easy to fault yourselves as parents but then we do feel we are doing the right thing to encourage his speech. Some children just need a little more support at times don't they.
Thank you all again it is very much appreciated.x
Hazeyjane I was surprised too! With my job I have to be very careful with how I talk to parents as of course I do not want to alarm them, only guide and support them. Xx
In addition to the talking point website, the Afasic charity's site www.afasic.co.uk has helpful advice and a free advice line for concerned parents. They will also tell you that it's not your fault! - which it's not, but sometimes we need to hear that, after the umpteenth friend or family member has suggested that if you read to him more/sent him to nursery/didn't send him to nursery/he had a sibling/he didn't have a sibling, all would be well... The Hanen Centre's book "It Takes Two to Talk" is good on how to help at home, even if just to reassure that you're doing the right things.
My DS only had babble and animal noises, and signs, at 19 months, but good understanding. Words came at 27 months and he's catching up very fast now, it's true that some children are "just" late talkers. However, prior to that we were worried, and receiving SLT input.
In our area HV and SLT guidance about referrals don't align. The HVs locally won't refer before 2, and then only if both expressive and receptive language are delayed. However, the SLT service themselves accept and encourage earlier referrals. If you can speak to their advice line direct, or self refer, I would therefore do so. Good luck!
PS I too think that the SLT who spoke to you wasn't being particularly professional...
I have a just turned 18month old who sounds a lot like your son, I self refered to SLT a few weeks ago (both GP and health visitor felt it was too early and we should wait until he turned two).
I was not happy to wait because he seems so far behind his peers (regular NCT meet ups help with direct comparisons).
So far I'm very pleased with SLT's approach - they have sent out advice for me to work on with ds - it's the sort of stuff I was doing already and I suspect you already do.
After six weeks they will phone me to check progress and take further if needed.
I'm in Scotland and we still have the '12 weeks to treatment' rule so the maximum time they can keep us on a waiting list is 12 weeks. I self refered because I was worried that there would a long wait to see a professional.
Also you should get his hearing checked. My ds has delayed speech and glue ear in both ears, with resulting hearing loss. We are waiting for grommets now.
Humphrey my eldest got those about ten weeks ago and the improvement has been very steady it seems that DC is now learning a new word every day. Before grommets DC would only say one word 'sentences' now she can say 3-4 word sentences. DC is 3.
Thank you all so much!
Ceara you are so right-everyone says something that you should/shouldn't be doing
I hadn't thought about getting his hearing checked! Thank you. He has never had any pain/illness/ear infection but is glue ear possible without any symptoms?
Thank you all.x
My ds has had no infections or symptoms. When I spoke to my speech therapist friend she said that a hearing test was absolutely first port of call!
Thanks 2nd, that is great to know
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