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22 month old isn't talking yet
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22 month old isn't talking yet

My 22 month old son has only said, "No" and "DaDa" once each.  He has said something "sounding" like "DaDa" every once in a while.  Once when he was sick (about two months ago) he did say,
"I need DaDa" (it was right after he had vomited, due to flu).  He makes noises "oohs" & "aahs" and such.  He really enjoys music, whenever he watches his programs, Disney movies or sees a commerical on TV he starts trying to sing & hums and he dances to the music.  I am a stay at home mom, so he doesn't attend daycare or such.  My husband and I are worried that we are doing something wrong or as it might be, that there's something we aren't doing.  We have started sign language with him, and he understands several of them.  He even signs a few of them.  Any information you might be able to provide us is greatly appreciated.

Thank You,

K
A Concerned Mother
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While most children of your son's age would have progressed further than he has re: speech and language, children do vary greatly in their acquisition of particular skills. But it would be sensible to have your son evaluated by a pediatric speech and language specialist. And continue to use spoken language. It will not be helpful to use sign - this will not boost his speech proficiency. One of the drives toward development of speech is the need to convey wants, desires, etc.
6 Comments
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Having 2 speech delayed children, I would like to very respectfully disagree with the good doctor about the use of sign language. By giving a child unable to communicate verbally another mode of communication, it aleviates a tremendous amount of frustration on the part of the child and the adults needing to understand his/her needs. Key to using sign language is verbalizing the word along with the sign, thus there is still an emphasis on the use of spoken language. Historically, as the child gains the ability to speak, the sign is dropped when they can make their needs known clearly.

There is even a movement afoot encouraging the use of sign language with infants and young children, and we have had tremendous success with this with our non speech delayed child also. Sign language is not a preferred mode of communication by a child, thus when the ability to verbalize is there, they will move to the easier form of communication.

Sincerely,
Kass, proud mom to three amazing kiddo's
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I agree with you Kass.  Our 14 month old son has been taught sign since he was seven months old.  Not only has it decreased his frustration level but it has also helped him learn language skills.  His doctor is amazed by his use of sign and spoken.  All the research points to this being a true.  I would highly recommend it to any parent.

He is really starting to put words to all of his signs and I've heard that by two or three they forget the signing as they learn more words.

Cheers,
Rachel
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Please call you county's Department of Health (Early Intervention Office) and they will come to your home to have your child evaluated.  This is all free of charge.  If your child is shown to be more than 33% delayed in speech and language, you child will be eligible for speech therapy and any other related services.  Please do this BEFORE you child turns three years of age - actually the earlier you have your child evaluated, the better.  Remember - everything is at no cost to you.  

If you have any questions, please email me ***@****.  Early Intervention is the best thing you can do for your child - trust me!
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I agree fully with the comments - sign language, or any other non-verbal appropriate system of communication, will facilitate development of a communication system onto which verbal language can be mapped.  In clinical practice, I have seen the frustrations of many "non-verbal" "languageless" (is that a word?) children who, by school entry level, display not only speech, language, learning and cognitive delays, but also severe behavioral problems that interfer with the efforts to overcome the these delays.  The best advise in my opinion, is that given above.  I would also suggest that you obtain full evaluations from an Audiologist and an Optometrist to rule out hearing or visual problems.  Then obtain an evaluation from a Speech and Language Pathologist.  Good luck with the signing.
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Our daughter, aged 28 months, still has very few words (says Mummy and cat clearly(!) but does not say daddy or use her own name.  She has congenital hypothroidism, which I understand can, in some cases, cause speech deficit.  We have had a speech therapy referal, but here in England, these things can take up to 4 months.  Does anyone have any experience of this condition?  We are finding it hard to get any clear information.
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