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Should I be worried?

29 replies

DoubleBuggyDriver · 29/09/2022 20:01

I have a DD who’s 16 months old. When I was 3 months postpartum, I found out I was pregnant again. I had horrible PND and I also had terrible pelvic girdle pain which I had physio for during my second pregnancy. I could barely walk across the road to the shops it was so bad.

I then had DS full term in April but he spent 6 weeks in NICU. In July I was told that he has a rare genetic condition. Since he was discharged from hospital we’ve had weekly appointments which have calmed down a bit but DS has weekly physio and OT. I’ve had PND again which I’m now on medication but a lot has happened in the last year and a half.

Here is my question/issue. DD doesn’t really speak much as in, she doesn’t say real words such as ‘mama, dada’ etc. I stayed inside so much when I was pregnant with DS, I’d let her watch TV from as soon as she woke up until bedtime. I only took her to a few baby groups but not much so she’s never socialised with kids of her own age.

I’ve now finally started to take her to toddler groups twice a week so she get’s to play around and just be a toddler really. I’m also hoping that she picks up a few words along the way. Both my mum and MIL have said that they’re concerned about DD as she doesn’t speak much. Apparently we were all saying words at her age such as ‘mama’ and ‘come’ and would point at things they want etc. DD will say things like ‘babababa’ and just little baby words but nothing more.

Should I be worried here? I didn’t think 16 months old have much to say but my mum keeps banging on about it to the point where my anxiety is getting so much worse. I’m now thinking is there something wrong with my child. Can I ask when your child started to say a few words or if you have a 16 month old, how many words do they say? What can I do to help her?

Sorry if this is jumbled, I know I’ve failed her so far but I’m actually starting to stress about this. Thank you

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yougotthelook · 29/09/2022 20:05

DoubleBuggyDriver · 29/09/2022 20:01

I have a DD who’s 16 months old. When I was 3 months postpartum, I found out I was pregnant again. I had horrible PND and I also had terrible pelvic girdle pain which I had physio for during my second pregnancy. I could barely walk across the road to the shops it was so bad.

I then had DS full term in April but he spent 6 weeks in NICU. In July I was told that he has a rare genetic condition. Since he was discharged from hospital we’ve had weekly appointments which have calmed down a bit but DS has weekly physio and OT. I’ve had PND again which I’m now on medication but a lot has happened in the last year and a half.

Here is my question/issue. DD doesn’t really speak much as in, she doesn’t say real words such as ‘mama, dada’ etc. I stayed inside so much when I was pregnant with DS, I’d let her watch TV from as soon as she woke up until bedtime. I only took her to a few baby groups but not much so she’s never socialised with kids of her own age.

I’ve now finally started to take her to toddler groups twice a week so she get’s to play around and just be a toddler really. I’m also hoping that she picks up a few words along the way. Both my mum and MIL have said that they’re concerned about DD as she doesn’t speak much. Apparently we were all saying words at her age such as ‘mama’ and ‘come’ and would point at things they want etc. DD will say things like ‘babababa’ and just little baby words but nothing more.

Should I be worried here? I didn’t think 16 months old have much to say but my mum keeps banging on about it to the point where my anxiety is getting so much worse. I’m now thinking is there something wrong with my child. Can I ask when your child started to say a few words or if you have a 16 month old, how many words do they say? What can I do to help her?

Sorry if this is jumbled, I know I’ve failed her so far but I’m actually starting to stress about this. Thank you

I'm a childminder.
Ignore your mum (with respect)
All kids are different. Some will have a few words at 16 months, some will have one or two words, some will have none.
All kids develop at different speeds.
And you are doing absolutely the right thing taking her to groups - talk to other mums there, they will tell you the same thing xx

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DoubleBuggyDriver · 29/09/2022 20:09

@yougotthelook thank you so much for your quick response, I really appreciate it.

I said the same thing to my mum! I said I’m sure all kids do things at different speeds. DD was sitting up at 4 months, crawling at 6 months and walking properly at 11 months. She’s been okay in other areas so maybe she’ll talk when she’s ready. My mum then said to me that she thinks DD may have autism hence this post.

I’ll definitely keep on taking her to groups and will speak to other mum’s to ask for their experiences. Thank you

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MolliciousIntent · 29/09/2022 20:09

At that age my DD had 4 words. By 20m she was speaking in full sentences.

The most important thing at 16m isn't speech, it's understanding and hearing. If you say "bring me your shoes" or "pass me the red plate" does she understand? If you say her name behind her back, does she hear you, does she react?

If you say yes to both of those, she's fine.

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yougotthelook · 29/09/2022 20:13

DoubleBuggyDriver · 29/09/2022 20:09

@yougotthelook thank you so much for your quick response, I really appreciate it.

I said the same thing to my mum! I said I’m sure all kids do things at different speeds. DD was sitting up at 4 months, crawling at 6 months and walking properly at 11 months. She’s been okay in other areas so maybe she’ll talk when she’s ready. My mum then said to me that she thinks DD may have autism hence this post.

I’ll definitely keep on taking her to groups and will speak to other mum’s to ask for their experiences. Thank you

Omg why do mums do that? Autism?
I look after one boy who is 17 months that can speak around 20 words.
I look after another little boy of 17 months than can't speak any yet.
Please try not to worry and definitely speak to other mums, you will find it so reassuring xx

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DoubleBuggyDriver · 29/09/2022 20:16

MolliciousIntent · 29/09/2022 20:09

At that age my DD had 4 words. By 20m she was speaking in full sentences.

The most important thing at 16m isn't speech, it's understanding and hearing. If you say "bring me your shoes" or "pass me the red plate" does she understand? If you say her name behind her back, does she hear you, does she react?

If you say yes to both of those, she's fine.

If you ask her to bring you her shoes or pass me the red plate, she won’t understand. Even if I point at the item, she won’t turn to look at what I’m pointing at, if that makes sense.

However if you call her name or tell her to come, she’ll hear you and come to find you/walk in your direction. How do you encourage them to understand more at this age?

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ohyeahiwaittablestoo · 29/09/2022 20:26

My 17mo has had a few sounds for a while. Wouldn't go as far as saying they're words. He'll say da which can mean daddy or dog or door. And hiya and no and some animal noises. But he communicates quite well non verbally by pointing at things or gesturing. He's good at being asked to go and choose a story or find his shoes or put something in the bin. And can point his nose/tummy/ears if asked. I feel like those things count for more than his ability to actually speak. I would say in comparison to his sister they are pretty similar. Her language exploded when she turned two having been doing one syllable words for ages. But there's someone in a babygroup whose daughter was saying the words happy birthday on her first birthday which seems crazy! They're all different. Sounds like physically your DD is ahead of the game. I think the way to help her learn is just by narrating everything you do. Tedious but that's how they learn. Don't beat yourself up about everything up until now. You did your best with a shit situation and are improving on it now. I have a small gap between mine too and pregnant with a baby is so tough.

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snowbellsxox · 29/09/2022 20:29

Miss Rachel is good on YouTube
If you watch a few episodes on language you can pick up some great tips :)

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Jillybean13 · 29/09/2022 20:47

Honestly wouldn't worry, my toddler was still really only saying toddler things and mama at that age and it's taken until just before 2 for him to really say much of anything & his speech is finally starting to explode. He's only recently started to go get things if we ask. 16 months all he wanted to do was climb things and run around like a madman. HV said they don't really check speech properly until about 2 & a half. They all just do things in their own time. Some babies focus on speech first others focus on movement. Speak to your Health visitor if you're concerned at all they're generally good at reassuring or checking to see if anything is amiss.

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Comedycook · 29/09/2022 20:50

I've never known a baby at 16 months to be talking. Vague sounds maybe but not real words.

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MolliciousIntent · 29/09/2022 21:01

DoubleBuggyDriver · 29/09/2022 20:16

If you ask her to bring you her shoes or pass me the red plate, she won’t understand. Even if I point at the item, she won’t turn to look at what I’m pointing at, if that makes sense.

However if you call her name or tell her to come, she’ll hear you and come to find you/walk in your direction. How do you encourage them to understand more at this age?

To be honest, that's more concerning than the lack of words - have you spoken to the HV?

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DoubleBuggyDriver · 29/09/2022 21:01

Thank you for the comments. It’s really nice to hear what other people’s kids do/don’t do. My DD is the same in the sense that all she wants to do is climb up things and run all over the house haha.

I have asked my mum to give her a chance and at least wait until she’s 2 as I’m sure her speech and understanding will get there with time. She only turned 1 in bloody May! Every child is certainly different but I hope her socialising twice a week with kids her age will help her. Thank you for the YT recommendation too

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DoubleBuggyDriver · 29/09/2022 21:04

MolliciousIntent · 29/09/2022 21:01

To be honest, that's more concerning than the lack of words - have you spoken to the HV?

I feel like she understands what you’re asking but just chooses not to do it because she wants to do something else. Today she threw a banana slice on the floor, I went to her and asked her to pick it up on the floor. I got her attention and pointed to it. She picked it up but once it slipped out of her hand she lost interest and ran off.

I haven’t spoken to the HV as I haven’t been concerned at all. It’s the fact that my mum said she thinks DD has autism made me consider whether I should be worried or not. I may just call the HV tomorrow to book in an appointment and see what they say

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NumberSocks · 29/09/2022 21:10

I think, 16 months is too young to worry.

You've already got good advice..I just wanted to add that from a speech point of view the most important thing is that you talk with your DD as much as possible wherever that is. not that she won't benefit from going out of baby groups but they might not specifically help with speech or understanding so wherever you are make sure you talk to her lots.

I've also read on another thread that it helps to sort of make your speech very relevant and responsive to what she is doing (eg if she's playing with a ball you could say "ball" or "you are rolling a red ball") rather than talking at her.

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Alfredo674 · 29/09/2022 21:15

16 month olds don't have a lot of language skills. My 2.5 year old barely said a word and just grunted until about 6 months ago and now his speech is superb.

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Jillybean13 · 29/09/2022 21:44

This insta account might be helpful for you too. Also second the Miss Rachel YT recommendation

instagram.com/chatty_chops?igshid=YmMyMTA2M2Y=

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Ifyouknowyouknowyouknow · 29/09/2022 21:51

Sounds like it could be worth getting her hearing checked as a first step.

I wouldn’t be concerned about a 16 month old who wasn’t talking provided the understanding was there, but doesn’t sound like it definitely is with your little one? Does she point? If you show her a book and ask her to point at things in the pictures (eg ball, cat, baby) can she do that?

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Keroppi · 29/09/2022 21:55

If she is understanding stuff then its okay. One of mine had a huge language explosion at 19 months,prior to that we bad a lot of baby talk and animal noises. Does she use baby talk that is her "language" for something? My youngest used to say oyy which meant orange, which then he used for every colour Grin

Yes to miss rachel! Mr Tumble as well. Reading lots of books together, singing songs wherever you can

Teach some makaton signs, all done/thank you/more are very easy to pick up at that age. For babygroups, surestart usually have a makaton specialist or a children's librarian who floats around the local authority and goes to sessions etc you could ask about

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chatterbox95 · 29/09/2022 22:00

This was like reading my own experience of motherhood. Both my children have disabilities, but I knew myself something was wrong from very early on. No babbling, no crawling and no walking. My dd had no interest in her toys or trying to walk or talk. Has your dd interest in her toys? Does she play well with them? What about things like eye contact and does she respond to her name?

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Devilishpyjamas · 29/09/2022 22:04

If she isn't pointing at objects of interest by 18 months then I think it would be worth talking to the health visitor. That is more important than words. Also important to encourage turn taking, so playing tickles, peekaboo, rolling balls, bubbles etc - anything with an element of back and forth between you.

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junebirthdaygirl · 29/09/2022 22:11

Reading books with one picture on each page and staying each word slowly pointing at the picture..board books. Can get from the library. The most important thing is to talk to her. So whatever is happening throughout the day describe it. So say ..its time for lunch. Let's get some yoghurt for the fridge. Chat away. This will help your baby as he grows too.
My ds had 10 words on his second birthday. As he was my first l wrote them down. By the time he was 3 he was speaking fluently so all children are different but they do need to have language around them to pick it up.

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whatshouldIdo2022 · 29/09/2022 22:11

My DD didn't say mama and dada until she was nearly 2, they weren't her first words but it took a long while for them to come and get more distinct. She does understand everything though so will fetch things etc. She always loved reading books with someone so we did a lot of 'where's the cat?' 'Show me the car' type stuff. Its very repetitive but seems to be how they learn!

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PinkButtercups · 29/09/2022 22:12

You haven't failed her. She is still a baby!

My DS (3) got referred to speech and managers at 2 and also for a hearing test. Hearing test was fine and speech and language said they did not expect him to say much more than he was at the time! He was saying things like car, colours etc and maybe would put them together so 'red car'. My DN who is 3 months younger than him spoke a lot quicker and the speech and language lady said to me that it isn't the fact that some children simply cannot talk it's the fact they're observing and listening to what is being said around them.

She said in a lot of cases early speaker don't understand the meanings of words but will repeat them so it looks like they say a lot more.

It was definitely the case with my son and his speech has really picked up in the last 6 - year or so. But when he started speaking he was understanding the words he chose to use.

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PinkButtercups · 29/09/2022 22:12

Hearing not managers!

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PinkButtercups · 29/09/2022 22:13

PinkButtercups · 29/09/2022 22:12

Hearing not managers!

No I mean speech and language 🤦🏻‍♀️. I'm tired tonight 🤣.

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DoubleBuggyDriver · 29/09/2022 22:35

Thank you again for all the comments.

DD will respond to her name and follow you if that’s what you’re asking. She loves playing with her toys and is very interested in them. She doesn’t ever point to anything but now that I think about it, she’s never been promoted too. I had PND so badly that I was literally struggling to survive day to day. I’ve probably read a book to her less than 20 times in her whole life, it’s so awful.

So when people are saying does she point to a cat if you say ‘where’s the cat’ when reading a book, she doesn’t even get asked that as I’ve never really read to her. It’s only in the last month since I’ve been on antidepressants do I actually have the energy to be a proper parent and do what’s right, that’s why I feel as if I’ve failed her.

I have storybooks but don’t have books that have clear pictures which focuses on what something is such as an apple, bus, car etc. I’ll definitely focus on that from now on. There’s so much to do with both kids and I’m really struggling to keep my head above water. Thank you for the kind and helpful comments

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