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Advice needed regarding speech delay please

(4 Posts)
insideleg Tue 09-Apr-13 21:52:33

I would love some advice from anyone who may have experience with speech delay. I posted this in the behaviour and development area and was advised to come here and ask...

My DS is nearly 2 1/2 and has never said a clear word. He was born 2 months early with severe IUGR and was in NICU for 2 months - this had quite an impact on his physical development but he has now caught up with walking/running/ motor skills etc. Not sure how relevant that is but wanted to include it.

He babbles with mainly 'gah' and 'bah' sounds but simply seems unable to experiment with any other sounds. He can say 'moo' for cow but it sounds like 'boo', and can say 'ba' for sheep but that is it.

We are currently waiting for a drop in session with a local SALT and have also tried the following:

Singing LOTS, rhymes songs etc.
Imaginative play - we lead, he leads etc.
Simplified language - one or two words repeated during play
Sign language - we use about 10 signs regularly with him.
Reading a range of books - some with words and a narrative, some pictures without words which we use to make up a story
We talk lots to him, but then consciously leave spaces after talking to allow a response - aim for 10 seconds.
We avoid saying 'say ...'.

The sounds he makes have been the same for well over a year, and he really doesn't seem to be making any improvement. I am really worried. He understands pretty much everything we say, and can recognise so many objects during reading etc.

During his 2 year check up recently (which was a few months late due to an admin error) the health visitor just said 'he'll talk when he is ready'. It wasn't very helpful.

We recently paid for an assessment with a speech therapist and were advised that therapy would not be effective until he was 3 years old. We are really worried that this seems rather late. Apparently he does not seem to have verbal dyspraxia.

Sorry this is very long but I was wondering if anyone had any experiences like this? I quite honestly cannot imagine a time when I will be able to have a 2 way conversation with him. Any info or advice would be much appreciated

ninjanurse Tue 09-Apr-13 22:08:02

Hiya, my son was like this at the same age. Could only say about 10 words by age 2.5. We asked for an assessment from the NHS, but as the wait was so agonisingly long, we paid for a private assessment and treatment. He was about 3 when sessions started, although it was monthly sessions with exercises given at home to do. The SALT also liaised with the preschool as to exercises they could do with him.

Regular weekly therapy will almost certainly not start until school age. This was when DS's NHS treatment kicked in. Weekly sessions and the school put in place a plan where they did 10 minutes one to one with him working on specific sounds.

One year after the therapy started, he was discharged. He is 7 no and in Year 3, very good at reading and writing, has had no problems at school. Still cant say the 'th' sound, but apparently that is not uncommon in this area of the country (essex!).

Good Luck. Start pushing for NHS therapy, we waited 18 months before the therapy started and you want things in place before he starts school.

incywincyspideragain Wed 10-Apr-13 23:15:14

sorry if I missed this in your post but can he hear? did he pass his newborn hearing test and has your HV referred you for a check now?

and keep using the sign language its great you have a method of communicating x

meala Wed 10-Apr-13 23:28:12

SALT sessions just vary across the UK. My DC had weekly sessions starting at 3.5 years old. Lots of game playing, eg post a word in the letterbox if it starts with a "s" sound.

My friend's DS didn't really speak at all til nearly 4 and is talking just like his peers now at 7.

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