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2 year old with good eye contact, no language and maybe a few red flags(10 Posts)
SIL has requested me to ask here again for some advice. We're not in UK so things are done differently and DN won't be getting a check till he is 2 and a half (he's just two)
He has no language whatsoever but for "ma" which he uses for Mum and Gran.
He says "Uh" for most things and when he wants to say no...his "Uh" actually has the right tone for that word iykwim
He shakes his head for yes and no correctly and has excellent understanding of language...so he does follow directions. If you say "Do you want to go and play in the park?" he will nod or shake his head.
The lack of language means we all have to guess a lot as to what he might want.
He doesn't play with toys but plays with any tools he can get his hands on....lawn mower, hoover, saw if he could!
He likes peepo and chasing games and eats well....feeds himself.
He is very cautiious with everyone....apart from his Mum and Gran....he sees me and DH about three times a week but still shies a little until he's relaxed enough.
Very, very clingy to SIL....wants carrying all the time when not playing.
Basically does it sound like he could have ASD? Or is the lack of play due to his personality and a separate issue to the language?
What can SIL do to help him talk?
I'm not sure why autism is the first option? Autism is just one of many difficulties small children can face, but it is relatively unusual.
It sounds like he has an expressive language or speech disorder or delay that MAY be part of a bigger picture but may not.
could be a lot of other things. was thinking along the lines of expressive speech disorder too.
where does your SIL live? even if the next routine check is only due at 2.5, there must be the option to be seen sooner if certain things are flagged up.
is a private Salt assessment an option?
teachmetotalk.com is a good website and could look at Hanen books e.g. It Takes 2 to talk.
Could try teaching signs or makaton or using PECS - research suggests using signs or symbols won't hinder language development - having an alternative communication system in place can help prevent frustration (and aggression!) if he can't make himself understood.
IFASIC is a website that covers the range of language problems.
Can he use a straw / blow bubbles? Sometimes it can be a problem using the mouth muscles to form words.
Putting preferred things out of reach so he has to ask for it (or sign / gesture) can help - if everything he wants is accessible he won't have to 'ask'.
My nephew had delayed speech and play skills and it was just that delay - he didn't have autism. They do now think he may have dyslexia so often these things overlap.
There are lots of youtube videos of using PECS
Use a backward facing buggy so lots of interaction (even if its non verbal)
If concerned about autism look at MCHAT which is a scoring tool
The interest in peepo / chasing games would suggest social interest and understanding not usual with childhood autism but things can be unclear for a while at that age
Thanks all. She mentioned Autism because of the lack of play with toys...he only likes tools. There is some repetative play which worries her. She tries to interrupt him when he's repeatedly pulling the light switch but he gets upset.
He can't use a straw or blow bubbles no....but he smiles and laughs a lot. He won't sit to be read to....he likes wandering about more.
Given his level of communication (apparently good receptive skills), I second trying makaton (simplified sign language) or PECS as it can be very frustrating for a child to be unable to communicate and may be a cause of clingy-ness and tantrums (terrible twos wouldn't help either). These systems may also help speech. Lack of speech does hinder imaginative play - I was surprised by this in my ds but his SALT confirmed it. I guess it is a lot easier for my ds to play out a scene now his knights can talk to each other!
Thank you blaeberry ....is your son talking well now? Can I ask how old he is?
My DS has autism, so when DD wasn't talking at 2 we were concerned. Like your DN, she had one sort-of-word. She's say "meh" for yes. But other than that, nothing. Her understanding was great, followed instructions, good eye contact etc. We took her to see the same (private) SALT, who had initially suggested DS might have autism. She didn't see anything concerning in DD, and said that there are some kids that do just talk late. She suggested learning a few makaton signs to help her communicate, then at about 2 years and 3 months, DD suddenly started talking. She got up to full sentences pretty quickly and is now talking as expected for her age (nearly 4). So some just are late talkers.
We had a phone line we could call to speak to a NHS SALT. They'd listen to your concerns and decide if they thought it worth referring. Is there anything like that in your SIL area?
Looks thank you. There is an early intervention programme here but without being too hard on SIL she's very cautious about getting any help...she's wrongly suspicious of medical services (he's not immunised) and she generally avoids doctors.
I am worried....but as an Aunt can only offer an ear and any advice she does ask for. I can't force her to have him assessed....and she has no partner. Her parents would never interfere.
All I can do I thought is perhaps encourage her to get him to nursery soon. Then there may be more help on the doorstep so to speak.
Though in hindsight consistent care for one adult drives early language development imo
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