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Forum Name: Pediatric Topics

Question: My 2 1/2 year old speech seems delayed


 boo0880 - Thu Oct 29, 2009 11:14 pm

My 2 1/2 year old daughter talks but most of what she says is hard to understand. It has improved over the last couple months but I am not sure when I should be worried and have it checked out. I think her hearing is ok because she answers, in her own way, when I whisper something from across the room. Some of her words are clear, the normal mommy, Daddy, and she can almost say her brothers name, she calls her blanket her "mimi", she says puppy and calls my dogs by the same name, but there are alot of words that are kind of mumbled. I would appreciate any advice. Thank you
 Debbie Miller, RN - Sun Nov 01, 2009 9:10 pm

User avatar Hello,
Speech develops at variable rates and they understand much more than they can form into words themselves. It's hard work to learn to talk. If you sense a delay, it would be wise to speak with your pediatrician about it because sometimes the problem lies with the ears. Fluid in the ears can make speech difficult and even though you know she hears, it could affect only certain sound ranges.

There are also early intervention programs which evaluate children for developmental milestones. Screening is often done through the school district to determine if some children need some extra attention prior to starting school at age five. Check with your doctor, local health department or school district to see what might be available for testing your child's developmental skills and determining if she is within the normal range. Again, normal varies a lot and verbal skills may suddenly click even after a time of "mumbling".

Even if your child is found to be within normal limits, checking it out early can't hurt and if there's something that needs attention, it can make all the difference since intervention can begin sooner rather than later. It is not unusual for a child the age of yours to still have limited speech and the fact that she has consistent "names" for items is a good sign. Use every opportunity to point out words to her such as "this is a table" just to reinforce the pronunciation so she hears the way it should sound. Eventually she will be able to formulate it correctly. Patience is the key here.

Best wishes.

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