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Date of last update: 9/9/2017.

Forum Name: Pediatric Topics

Question: 3 year old slow developing still not talking

 kutya - Mon Aug 13, 2007 10:06 pm

My girlfriend and I are concerned about her 1/2 brother and very concerned that his parents have not taken him to see a doctor.
He is 3 years old and still not speaking. He does not speak at all besides occasionally saying "dadadada" or "bababababa." He is normally silent. He rarely ever cried, even as an infant.
He is in a bilingual house.
He can identify some animals, and some letters by pointing to them when asked. (Pointing is his main mode of communication.) He demonstrates that he can hear and that he can understand despite not verbally expressing himself. Still, he responds abnormally to loud noises; he does not acknowledge them. He does not blink, flinch, or otherwise seem to notice loud noises and ignores his name when called.
He was slow to walk, he first walked at 26 1/2 months, and never crawled.
His father was in his late 50s when he was born.
He does not like to drink water, his main source of liquid is watermelon, which, thankfully, he loves. He is not potty trained (no real attempt made thus far), but still rarely urinates.
He has always been a chubby boy.
He is very social. He loves to hug and rough-house.
He seems to lack fine motor skills. He runs somewhat clumsily with his arms held high and tensed.
He has been around children, but not regularly.

We have tried bringing up the subject of his slow development before, to no avail. We agree that if we could provide some suggestions or insight his parents would be more likely to seek help.

any suggestions as to what may be wrong?
 Dr. Chan Lowe - Tue Aug 14, 2007 7:27 pm

User avatar Hi Kutya,

This is a situation where I would recommend a developmental evaluation. If it is just that he is not speaking the first step is a formal hearing evaluation. Even if he is reacting to sounds, it may be that he is hearing muffled sounds and not correct pronunciation causing him difficulties in learning to speak.

It sounds like he may have some other delays as well. Often, when presented with these cases, the parents will ask me if I believe the child has autism. It sounds as if this child is very socially interactive. This argues against autism, although it does not formally rule it out.

My best recommendation it for the child to see his pediatrician to specifically address the concerns about development. There are scales, such as the Denver Developmental Scale, that can help formally evaluate developmental milestones and if there is a delay.

If there is a problem, seeing a developmental pediatrician may be helpful.

Best wishes.
 kutya - Fri Aug 17, 2007 2:21 pm

Thank you.
We'll be a little more informed talking to them now.

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