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Any SALTs around? I think that DS probably has a language delay. Or does he?? Arghhhhhh

(12 Posts)
Annner Fri 24-Oct-08 18:52:19

DS will be two on Tuesday. He has a very chatty older sister (3.11). I cannot decide whether this is just a boy who is happy to let everyone else talk for him, and who communicates his needs and wants pretty effectively without speech, or whether there is something that needs rather more investigation.

He has no problems with pointing and talking, it's just that not much of it is actual words. He doesn't seem to be hugely aware that his words are not the same as our words.

The words that he uses consistently and clearly are :
Bye bye
Ha-ow (hello)
No -which he sometimes says as "on" (and shakes head)
Hole (rather randomly - he sees them everywhere)
Rain (Train)
Bah (Bus)
Air-rane (Plane) (spot the one track mind...)

We sometimes, but not always get…
Dadell (Isabel)

The rest of his talk - and he talks all the time - involves a lot of pointing and labelling, and general shouting.

This usually involves the right number of syllables and could (by his mother) be understood as being not far off the right thing “ow-er” (flower) “ai bo” (rainbow)
“Uh-uh-by” (butterfly)

He loves singing, and Twinkle Twinkle and The Wheels on the bus are totally understandable by their tunes, but are sung in the same way as above.

AS far as communication is concerned there doesn't seem to be anything wrong with his hearing (can hear a chocolate button being given to someone else at 500 m) and responds to known voices calling him in a crowd (eg at a toddler group) and he does seem to understand and make sense of a lot of language. He'll respond immediately to two stage instructions:
"Put your car down, tea is ready"
"Go and get your shoes from the kitchen and bring them to me"
"Go to the back door, we're going outside"
"It’s time to tidy up",
"Go and find Isabel"
"Where is your nose/tummy/eyes etc? Where is Mummy’s nose"

He enjoys listening to longer stories, e.g. the Very Hungry Caterpillar and Dear Zoo etc.

Am I being paranoid, or should we really be hearing more at 24 months?

Thanks, Annner

MandMand Fri 24-Oct-08 19:40:58

Annner - this sounds very similar to my DS, who was 2 in July. At his two year check up with the Health Visitor, she said his speech was perhaps a bit behind, but still within the normal range. She told me to make an appointment to see her again about if it hadn't improved much by the time he was 2 and a half.

His speech has got better over the last couple of months, and he's now got lots of intelligible two and three word phrases, mixed in with the babble. From what the HV said, it seems that as long as they can understand what's said to them, are trying to speak to you, there's not too much to worry about.

Annner Fri 24-Oct-08 19:46:53

Thanks for this, MandMand, That sounds very reassuring - particularly from the perspective that I know he understands what is being said and that he thinks he is talking.

My only benchmark is his sister, whose speech is in advance of her years.

We don't have two year checks here - just a questionnaire at about 18 months. I didn't tell porky pies on that, but maybe it would be an idea to see the HV anyway.

Anyone else like to reassure me with tales of their DSs who bypassed talking completely and went straight to grunts?

ib Fri 24-Oct-08 19:46:57

Can't help but posting to keep an eye on this thread. Ds is 22 months and has only a few words he uses consistently. Everything else is sign language (which he developed himself, and uses very consistently).

TBH it hadn't occurred to me that there was a problem blush, because he can understand and communicate anything he wants, he just doesn't use words.

nappyzonehasastroppytoddler Fri 24-Oct-08 19:52:10

My ds is 2 in 2 weeks and says daddys to everything, no and bbep beep and not much else - most of his communcation s by pointing a shouting oh also all gone and hello in the way you mentioned. I have never had any development checks nor been called for any and this now has me thinking too..... hmmmm

Annner Fri 24-Oct-08 19:56:51

I just thought that maybe I should take stock of where we were, and broke the "Don't Google!" rule. But...

this and this one got me thinking a bit.

It's really hard to know at what point you really should talk to someone (I tend to be a deny-there-could-possibly-be-a-problem type) or whether I am making it up. Writing down all that he says did seem to crystallise it a bit.

ceebee74 Fri 24-Oct-08 20:03:34

Just to give you extra reassurance my DS was very similar at 2 (in July this year). He could say quite a few words but the majority of these were nonsense to any one other than me and DH (and tbh DH only understood about half of them). He was just starting to string 2 words together when he turned 2 but not consistently and he didn't actually talk much at all but understood everything that was said to him.

However, these last few months, it has honestly been like a switch has been turned on inside him as he chatters away constantly now. His words have become much clearer, his vocab has grown dramatically and he consistently says 3/4/5 word sentences that make sense - and all this in the space of 3 months.

So, hopefully this will reassure you - I felt exactly the same as you and everyone told me that it would come in his own time - and sure enough, it did.

luckywinner Fri 24-Oct-08 20:14:27

I am in the middle of a training course to be a Home Start volunteer and we had a chat from a SALT yesterday. I am absolutely not the expert here but she did give us a very interesting chat on development so I am going to try and repeat back what she said to us to see if it helps but please please don't think I am an expert!

Ok, so imagine a pyramid and it represents the stages of development in language as if you would build from the bottom up. The first building block is adult interaction, then looking and listening, followed by play, then understanding, then talking, then pronunciation

So basically there are lots of different stages of development and pronunciation does not always come until later on.

She also gave us info on when you would refer to a speech therapist. I can put it on here if you like but just wanted to check before I do as it might actually be counter-productive as the SALT said there are many factors on whether you may need extra help from them, and actually these days they like to see children as early as possible as they don't see the point any more of waiting and seeing.

Do you know if you can self-refer because that's what you do in my borough of London.

Let me know if you want more info on the details of when you refer to a SALT and I really hope I was of some help.


Annner Fri 24-Oct-08 20:18:47

Ooh, yes please, Luckywinner. I think that if I do reach the conclusion that seeing the HV could be in order, I'd like to be aware of the criteria that would be looked at.

I'd heard that they like to see children sooner rather than later these days, which is partly what got me thinking.

luckywinner Fri 24-Oct-08 20:29:32

Okey dokey, for a two year old, they recommend a referral if:

-The child never concentrates on anything for more than a few seconds
-Shows no pretend play
-Is not demonstrating understanding of simple routines
-Is not understanding single words (eg, show me the key, where's the cup) without non-verbal cues such as pointing.
-Is not attempting to say any words at all

I really hope that helps and doesn't stress you out even more. The SALT kept stressing though that there can be a myriad of factors contributing to speech development and the majority of children go on to have no problems. But she did say if you are at all worried ask for a referral/or refer yourself as sometimes all it can take is a couple of pieces of advice tailored to your child that can make the parent feel less stressed about it and that can only be a good thing.

Annner Fri 24-Oct-08 20:42:34

That's really helpful, and I think that on this basis we would be unlikely to be referred, but I imagine the HV may want to keep and eye on us.

The child never concentrates on anything for more than a few seconds - Not the case for DS: he spends ages drawing, taking something apart, looking at a book, playing with a laptop (oops)

-Shows no pretend play - Not the case for DS: he pushes babies around in a pushchair, makes them meals in the toy kitchen, brushes my hair, pretends to shave or dry his hair.

-Is not demonstrating understanding of simple routines - I'm not completely sure what this means - is it the capacity to predict what will happen next in "his" day, i.e going downstairs for breakfast when he is dressed, pointing and shouting at the kitchen cupboard because the Malties are in there? Standing and huffing by the rocking chair in the evening because he wants his boob? Running to the front door once his coat is on? That type of thing? Or is it more subtle than that?

-Is not understanding single words (eg, show me the key, where's the cup) without non-verbal cues such as pointing. He can do this - as well as the examples I listed in the OP, he will, go and get his dirty plate from the dining room table if I ask him to, or collect something from another room. He'll point at things in a book, i.e., "DS, where is the dog? where is the rainbow?"

-Is not attempting to say any words at all. He talks all the time. It's just mainly his own stuff.

This is me thinking aloud, I think!
Thanks a lot, Annner

mytetherisending Fri 24-Oct-08 20:52:51

The development of language varies so much between children. It might be wise to talk to your HV, but I would say he will probably catch up. Boys on the whole speak later than girls, as do younger siblings if the older child is very good at it. The older child often gets what the younger one wants without him needing any words. The fact that you feel he hears well and understands instructions would make me think it is just a lack of necessity for him to do it. I personally would not worry for another few months.
The other thing is that children learn to talk very differently i.e.
dd1- lots of single words at 18mths, 3 word sentences at 2yrs.
mindee1- less than 6 words at 18mths, about 50 words at 2, didn't put 2 words together just started talking in 3 word sentences at 2.6yrs. Lots of different words.
mindee2- 2 words at 18mths, 30ish words by 2yrs and talking in 3 word sentences by 2.10yrs . Only select sentences.

Lots of children go from single words directly to sentences. They take it all in but are plucking up the confidence to try it out iyswim. smile

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