My 2 1/2 year old son refused to speak in "real" words until recently. From 1 year on, he would repeat words very clearly that we would try with him - about 5 times. Then - almost as if he had a check list in his pocket - he would refuse to repeat the word again. He would use about ten words - like "eat" and "again" which seemed to be important to him but that would be it. We changed him from at home day care to a preschool situation about six months ago - hoping to spark his need to communicate. Now - he is naming everything that he possibly can - and gets mad when you don't repeat it back to him showing that you understand him. We also changed doctors in this time frame because we felt that our doctor was not willing to take the time to sit with my son and discuss this concern with us. Our new doctor did - and reassured us that although our son was very stubborn (and has been about everything :-) ) - he was a "late talker" and to give it a small amount of time to see if we saw an improvement. My son is also the second child and his older sister is VERY VERY VERY talkative! He does not have a history of ear infections. He has babbled in sentence format for over a year and 1/2.
That leads me to my question - should I be concerned that his speech is not always clear? What is reasonable? He does have a vocabulary of over 100 words now (70-80 in the last three months) - with 30-40 of them being very clear. He seems to be adding words daily -if not hourly some days. He shocked me yesterday by counting to 16 on his own - with all but number seven being clear.
I know it seems that I should be rejoicing in his new found need to communicate - and trust me - I AM!! But - I just want to make sure that I am not missing something and he is progressing on the right path
Everything is likely fine. I use the term 'likely' because, without actually hearing your son, I cannot assert with absolute certainty that his articulation is OK. In other words, it's to be expected that a child so young will not always articulate words with precision. If a child's articulation is so inadequate that he cannot be understood at all, then that would be problematic. But, if the reality is that most of the time he can be understood even if the words are not pronounced exactly right, then it's most likely fine. If you or his doctor have doubts, you could always arrange an evaluation by a Speech/Language therapist, but it really does not sound like this is necessary.
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