My son's three and has a speech delay. How do I get him to talk?
My three year old son's speech is delayed. He can however sing very well from the music he hears. We were wondering whether to take him to a speech therapist or to wait and see as at times some milestones are delayed in some children. He is however able to speack one word at certain times like when he falls down he will utter one word like 'pain'. What exactly could be wrong with him?
We would recommend seeing a speech-language pathologist (SLP). Even though you are correct in that there are developmental milestones that vary from child to child, from what you’ve described, it appears that your son's speech/language development may seems to be somewhat outside the range as indicated The American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. As such, we would not recommend a "wait and see" approach.
Again, it would be impossible to make a diagnosis in this forum, so we definitely recommend making an appointment with a licensed SLP.
I would take him right away and make sure he dosen't have autism or some related condition.
The reason I suspect autism is because this condition makes children very apprehensive to communicate with others, yet communicating through a meduim they find soothing, such as singing or some other creative form, can come suprisingly easy to them.
Keep in mind that there are varying degrees of autism and related conditions. Your child may not SEEM autistic at all. He may be very mildly autistic or mildly experiencing some similar condition.
The thing about him not talking but singing is NOT typical, and just to be safe I'd check for autism ASAP, since early intervention is very important with autism.
Do NOT wait and see. It sounds like you have a gut feeling that is correct. Call your school district and request a speech assessment. It is free. If it is determined he needs services, you will also receive that free. Age 3 is a great age to begin services if needed and will alleviate many problems later on.
I suggest immediate speech evaluation. If not done privately, the school district can do it for free. They have 30 days to do it by law from the date you request it. Also, make sure there is a speech pathologists present when testing. Yes, I have seen evaluations come to my desk with no speech person present, and they said the child was fine, but not talking at 2 1/2. Early intervention is the key to speech, no matter what the diagnosis. Don't let those people who said your child might have autism scare you. It could be just a delay, that should of been addressed at 2 1/2 . But as a autistic specialist and a special Ed teacher and a mother of a non talking 2 1/2 year old who is now 7 and recently returned to speech, for reading issues. Get your child tested, and into therapy ASAP. God Bless, your in my thought s and prayers.
He is three so don't delay any more and get him to a speech therapist. Discuss this with your pediatrician and she may have a recommendation of a therapist who works well with speech delay and can assess hearing and swallow.
Wayne Yankus, MD, FAAP
expert panelist: pediatrics
There might not be anything "wrong" with him. He might just need a little help. When my son was 2 1/2 he was only saying around 5 words. I got him evaluated and started working with an early education specialist and speech therapist. That helped improve his speech greatly. When he was 4 he was enrolled in Head Start, that is what helped the most. Just being around the other children and hearing them speak and interacting made a world of difference. Within 2 months in school he was back up to normal speech.
Take him to be evaluated right away. In the mean time, don't use too many words at a time when you speak to him, more importantly don't expect sentences from him either. If he brings you a cup for example and he says "up". Just say, "cup" or, "That's right it is a cup. If you always say things like... "No. say cup." or , "Say cup" He may start repeating the "say cup" part or he will become frustrated because you are always 'correcting' him and may not say anything at all.