I have two sons whose speech developed normally until 18 months at which time they not only ceased to develop new vocabulary, but lost the few words they spoke. My older son is now 6 and 4 was diagnosed with an Auditory Processing disorder. He currently appears to be caught up according to his last evaluation. My youngest son is 30 months, and was speaking in 2 word sentences at 15 months, regressed at 18 months and now says mama and no. He was recently evaluated by a speech pathologist who mentioned a downward spiral and sensory intergration as possible diagnoses. Has anyone else heard of this speech regression and is there a known cause(s).
It's important to determine the nature of this problem, and to try to pinpoint what is occurring. What did the pathologist mean by downward spiral? Loss of already-achieved language can be a symptom of several developmental problems, as well as symptomatic of processing difficulties of various sorts. The diagnostic process is not always straightforward, but it sounds like you should obtain additional assessments. It could be that the development of language is only one aspect of your son's development that is in arrears, and this needs to be determined.
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