Non-verbal toddler with hyperactivity

(13 Posts)
Syeda30 Sat 04-Apr-20 13:39:36

I am a mum of 2.4yr old with developmental delay. No diagnosis yet but possible autism. He is non verbal with nil receptive language. He doesnot respond to his name and doesnot even mind if mum and dad are with him or not. He is completely in his own world. He was very calm child until now but he has become very hyper a month ago. He is jumping screaming shouting and no intrest in playing with toys(earlier he would happily play with them)i try to play with him somwtimes he would allow me to join in but is not cooperating and throwing toys away. His therapy has also stopped due to lockdown. I just dont know what to make out of this situation. Iam crying in nights thinking what the future holds for my poor baby. He has never shown intrest in sorrounding or anybody. As a baby he would watch tv for hours and would cry if it stopped. He doesnot seek anybodys company not even mine. Sometimes he comes to us for rough and tumble kind of play and thats about it. Things started to change in last six months when he started making eye contact and also coming for us to play. But every little progress is gone. He is back to himself again with added hyperactivity.
Sorry for the long post but i just want to hear from the parents whowent through this situation and how their kids are doing now. This might give some peace to my mind. I have a 4 month old as well and i also sufer from anxiety so i am worried that this situation and constant crying might take a toll on me.
We had portage since mid january but it stopped. We had an intial session with a chold psychotherapist and floor time specialist. She gave us some ideas to start with but he is just not intrested. How do i even start with him.
Please reply. Hope everybody is safe.
Thanks in advancesmile

OP’s posts: |
Biggreen87 Sat 04-Apr-20 14:04:04

Hugs to you op!

It's really really hard especially in the early days when you don't know what to do for the best and support is virtually non existent.

He's super young and will change a lot as he grows. Currently he sounds exactly like my ds at that age. Have you seen salt? Have they made any recommendations such as visual aids, pecs, makaton? Basically anything to support him in communicating with you.

What are your mains issues op? Lets see if we can break this down into slightly more manageable chunks because it as an awful lot isn't it. Would some sensory activity ideas be helpful?

My son is 10 now and very different to when he was a toddler. He still has significant difficulties but things are much easier than when he was tiny and i was totally and utterly clueless. You sound far more switched on than i was. Give yourself a break, your doing a great job!

Syeda30 Sat 04-Apr-20 15:47:52


Thanks for your reply. We had 3 seasions with SALT and they are to review him again. They gave us few ideas. But portage is wonderful they asked us to try PECS and makaton. But the problem is as i mentioned he cannot sit still even for 5 sec! We are trying so hard to engage with him to teach him but he will run or laugh. He doesnot seem to understand that we are talking to him. This is my main worry how do i make him even sit and start teaching. He knows nothing atm no alphabets no numbers. He started babbling alot.
What activities did you do with your son and what therapies worked for him. If you dont mind me telling is he verbal now (this is my main worrysad). But before that i want to improve his receptive language.
Any ideas from your side are most welcome.

OP’s posts: |
Niffler75 Sat 04-Apr-20 17:38:52

With therapy stopping and the recent situation with covid-19 has your daily routine changed? Are you managing to get out of the house?

Biggreen87 Sat 04-Apr-20 17:59:52

Pecs and/or makaton aren't going to work overnight. What motivates him? Is there anything he will focus on that he really wants? For my ds it was chocolate buttons. Does he lead you to objects he wants? Does he come to you if he hurts himself? Does he make noises to express himself? Any non verbal communication at all?

Receptive wise all you can do is keep communicating with him, keep it simple. Use singular words/short phrases for objects he wants and provide him with non verbal cues. For example say cup and hold up his cup. Label objects, read to him whether he pays attention or not. Breaking communication down with pecs and/or makaton can help. When he babbles, make the same noises, see if he notices your copying him. You can't force communication and the last thing you want to do is make it stressful for him.

I can't tell you what will work for your ds but can give you ideas that worked for us.

I wonder if some of your sons energy is sensory energy. My ds doesn't play with toys, doesn't watch tv at all. He is always on the go. Visual aids are very important for him. He needs to know what is happening, where we are going. We do this via pictures.

Ds is never still unless we use techniques to help him focus. His school use a weighted lap pad or weighted shoulder wrap when they are doing sit down work. Ds responds to pressure. He is calmed by tight cuddles, being squished under a therapy ball or peanut. His weighted comes everywhere with us, he also sleeps under one. He is calmed by having his hands and feet rubbed. He will sit and listen to the hum of his bubble tube.
He loves messy play, it certainly channels his energy. He covers himself in shaving foam in the shower. We play with gloop, coloured rice/noodles, water play, normal sand, kinetic sand, orbeez, paint. We have a door way swing inside. A trampoline outside and trampet inside. He loves woodland works, nothing calms him more than a long walk. For us it has been finding things that work for ds and organising the day so that we point him in the direction of things that we know will help. If i left him in a room full of toys with the tv on he would run around the house throwing himself into everything and probably tip the tv over! I hope that makes some sense!

My ds can say a few words (he said his first words last August so it's new for us) but can communicate very effectively. He's the prime example that there's many forms of communication. He uses an ipad with picture based communication software and can make requests in a sentence. He has a severe learning disability alongside autism which has definitely contributed to the severity of his language difficulties. His receptive language is very good now considering he didn't respond to his name till nearly 6 he's doing great. As long as he can communicate i really couldn't care a less how he does it. He's cheeky just like any other kid.

I hope some of this helps you.

Biggreen87 Sat 04-Apr-20 18:01:10

That was in paragraphs! Silly phone lol

Syeda30 Sun 05-Apr-20 00:49:33

Hello niffler75

We are at home for more than 5 weeks. I think that could be the reason for hyperactivity but he was coping well until 2 days ago. Today was very hard day for us!

OP’s posts: |
Syeda30 Sun 05-Apr-20 01:03:07

Thanks a ton dear for suggestions!
Yes he leads us by hand for his needs but he doesnot point. He loves gym ball and always bring it to us to make him jump
.we ordered mini trampoline but he is not jumping on it and wants us to hold his hand even if he jumps.

I started messy play with him last week on recommendation of his therapist but he is showing very little intrest. It might take time i suppose!Atm he is too bored to do anything. We stay in flat and dont have access to garden so he is pretty much holed up inside.

I will try the activities you mentioned he might like them. Iam so happy for your son. Talking to you has put my mind at ease.thanx hun! I pray mine start responding to his name and say his first wordsmile

OP’s posts: |
Harmos Tue 28-Apr-20 13:48:56


Hi, we are in the same boat with our 3.3yr old son, non-verbal although he can make sound but not in any context. Completely in his own world, zero shared attention (he doesn't bring us any toy to play with him, expressionless face, doesn't tell us when he is thirsty/hungry). Response to name is 50/50 and he will come when called sometimes if not focused on something else, sit when told, stand when told, so he has some understanding. Does puzzle well.
He also pulls hand to what he wants, and brings his boots if he wants to go outside. He is also hyper sometimes, runs up and down the living room, run in circles, also has repetitive play.
We are very worried about his and our future...

ReturnofSaturn Tue 28-Apr-20 22:12:44

What is Portage?

I'm in touch with HV, and paediatrician about my 2 year old (was 2 in January) but nobody has mentioned this?

Harmos Tue 28-Apr-20 23:35:33

Local Authority Early Intervention, includes speech & language and LEAP (autism) therapy services free of charge, but long waiting list and the service is usually once a week for an hour or a bit more for LEAP.

ReturnofSaturn Tue 28-Apr-20 23:52:43

Thanks Harmos.

openupmyeagereyes Wed 29-Apr-20 05:49:17

ReturnofSaturn what is on offer depends very much on the area in which you live. Portage is a service run by some local authorities where someone will come to your home and work with you and your child on behaviour and attention skills, that sort of thing. You have to be referred for it. Some areas seem to dropping it in favour of invite only groups.

If you Google your local authorities Local Offer page you will see what is available where you live though many services will need referrals and have waiting lists. Not all though.

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