Approximately 5-10% of children have developmental disorders that cause speech and language development delay (in addition to speech, these are also other forms of communication: sign language, writing, visual skills (for example, the ability to show something).
At first, parents usually notice that the child is lagging behind other children of the same age in their language development, and describe it as “the child does not speak,” “speaks late,” “does not speak yet”.
Speech delay may be associated with:
There are two main types of speech delay:
- expression delay, i.e. inability to create speech,
- delay of perception, i.e. inability to process and understand the speech of others.
Also, a child may experience a combined delay of two types (both expressions and perceptions).
Most children with speech disorders also have language development disorders,developmental delay of expression, but visual language skills appropriate for age (recognition of parents, objects, response to facial expressions, execution of commands that are accompanied by a gesture demonstration of what needs to be done, pointing to desired objects, etc.) are not disturbed, age-appropriate perception and understanding of the speech of other people (recognition of sounds and turning in their direction, execution of one-step, two-step commands that are not accompanied by gestures, the ability to show called body parts and objects), although I still have a slight or changeable delay in the development of perception in some children. With early therapy, the majority of such babies improve speech to the onset of younger school age and, as a result, they practically do not differ from normal healthy children.
Some children with delayed expression simply start speaking late — this is a constitutional delay. These children develop normal speech and language skills as they get older, without any treatment.
Unfortunately, today there is no way to distinguish children with a constitutional delay, who will catch up with their peers in development without external interventions, from children who need treatment.This can only be determined by “backdating”, but experts do not recommend “sit and wait” whether the child’s speech will improve by itself, because if not, then it will be much more difficult to correct the situation.
Another important reason for the delay in speech development may be hearing problems, so all children who are expected to delay speech or language development should check their hearing.
Pay attention: if a baby reacts to loud claps or phone calls or comes when you call him from another room, this does not mean that he hears well.
Also, the reason for the delay in speech development may be dementia, mental retardation or other common developmental disorders, including autism. In addition to delays in expression and perception, children with such abnormalities also experience delays in the development of visual communication skills (recognition of objects, control of facial expressions, following commands, which are accompanied by gestures showing what needs to be done, showing desired objects, etc.).
Tongue-speaking, laziness, the presence of a large number of brothers and sisters who speak instead of a child, bilingual communication in the family do not cause a delay in speech development
Below are the speech and language stages of development, which correspond to about 75% of all children, i.e. If your child’s development is embedded in the frame, it can be considered healthy.
This framework can only be used as a general guideline to determine if your child may be at risk for speech or language problems and if his development requires more attention. A doctor should be consulted if the child’s development is not invested in the indicated framework, if there is regression or loss of language abilities that the child has already reached. The doctor will determine the overall level of development of the child (language, social, motor abilities and fine motor skills) and, if necessary, prescribe additional therapy.
Early stages of speech and language development
Newborns can determine from which side the sound is heard, left or right, shortly after birth, and turn their heads to look in the direction of the sound source. This is better with loud sounds, when the baby is awake and active, but he should hear quieter sounds. Babies can also smile, spontaneously or in response to someone from about one month old.Newborns will recognize their parents from about 1-2.5 months;
Newborns can mimic speech sounds from about 3-6 months of age;
Monosyllabic babbling or individual sounds with vowels and consonants (ma, ba, yes, ha, guu ...) usually start at 4-8 months of age;
Composable babble or repetitive vowels and consonants (babababa, lalala ....) usually begin at 5-9 months of age;
Individual words (mom, dad, yes, no) usually appear from 6-10 months of age;
By 5–10 months of age, most babies already speak to their mom / dad, but use these words not only to refer to parents. From 7-12 months of age, the baby already consciously uses the words mom / dad to refer to parents. The first word (except mom / dad) babies usually speak at 9-14 months;
By the age of 10-15 months, the child should be able to show the item he wants;
By the age of 11-20 months, the child should be able to speak 4-6 words (except mom / dad and the names of family members or pets);
At the age of 14-21 months, the baby is able to perform a two-step command, not accompanied by gestures;
At the age of 16-20 months, the baby is able to express two desires in one word (juice, milk, more, etc.);
At the age of 14-18 months, the baby is able to show one or more parts of the body, and at least six - by the age of 22 months;
Phrases or sentences of two words appear between the ages of 18-22 months, for example, “I want milk,” “more juice,” etc .;
A sharp increase in the vocabulary to about 50 words occurs in about 16-24 months;
Pronouns (me, you ...) usually appear by the age of 19-26 months, although they can be used incorrectly (for example, vice versa). Most babies are trained to use pronouns correctly by 30 months;
From about 24 months of age, the child’s speech is about half understood by an outsider or those who are not constantly with the child;
In the 24-32 months, the baby can name four pictures;
A conversation of two or three simple sentences, put together, usually turns to 26-32 months;
The baby understands two prepositional commands (for example, “put a cup on the top of the table” or “next to the book”) by 27-34 months;
The baby must know the name or purpose of at least two items to 29-34 months;
A baby should be able to name one color by 2.5-3.4 years and four colors by 3-4.3 years;
By the age of 3, the baby’s speech should be approximately 75% comprehensible to outsiders or those who do not communicate with him constantly, the baby’s vocabulary should consist of approximately 250 words.
By the age of 4, the child’s speech must be fully understood, the dictionary must include more than 600 words.
A pediatrician usually checks the hearing of a baby with a simple test (audiometry) when the baby is ready for this (usually from the age of four). Younger children (under 4 years old) usually need to be consulted by an audiologist.
If you think your baby is lagging behind in speech or language development, or you suspect he has hearing problems, or a child has problems with school performance, it is important to contact a specialist and check the child's hearing.
What can you do to improve your child's speech?
Read.Especially - picture books with which you can engage a child in a game to show and name familiar objects;
Talk.Use simple language when talking to your child, ask him many questions. You can also speak out loud when you are near a child;
Respond. React to the child's speech so that the baby will feel your support for his efforts to speak;
Repeatwhat the child said, somewhat expanding what he said, turn individual words or simple sentences into longer sentences or phrases;
be patientdo not scold the child for the mistakes he made in speech and give him time to say what he wants, do not rush the baby;
Do not forcebaby talk, denying him that he wants, until he asks for it the way you want. Instead, when a baby shows up on an object that he wants to receive, speak his desire out loud: “Do you want juice?”, “Oh, do you want this cup?”, Etc., and give the child what he wants. Otherwise, by forcing him to speak or by constantly forcing you to repeat your words, you create a stressful situation for the baby.
Yarosh Tatyana Alexandrovna, speech therapist: “For a kid with delayed speech, do a daily massage of the pens, this will stimulate the work of speech centers. And also - modeling from plasticine, games with a mosaic, a designer, buttons, peas and beans - under the supervision of adults! These actions will develop fine motor skills of hands, thereby stimulating the development of speech. "