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My Child Won't Speak -
5 Signs its Time
for a Speech-Language Evaluation
Clearly, every child develops at different speeds. However, when expected skills are delayed by 3-6 months it may be time to seek out a professional speech therapist.
AVOIDING SOCIAL INTERACTION
If you notice your baby is not smiling, looking, listening, babbling or understanding he/she may not be developing the foundation for speech skills.
NOT MAKING ANY SOUNDS
Even before talking, a baby should be making a nice variety of squeals, laughs, vowels and consonants. The adage "1st Word in the 1st Year" is a good rough approximation for speech development. Besides "Mama" and "Dada" more words for favorite things should be said to gain access to those items.
YOU OR FAMILY/FRIENDS CANNOT UNDERSTAND THEM
By age two you should be able to understand 50% of what your child says, by age three 75%, and by age 4, 100%.
NOT COMBINING WORDS BY AGE TWO
Many toddlers will start this by 18 months, but by age 2 they should begin to put two words together for simple sentences like "Mommy eat", "Car Go", "More Cookie".
INDEPENDENTLY PUTTING WORDS TOGETHER
By age 2 a child should be having consistent growth in vocabulary and make simple sentences to express themselves. These sentences form a foundation for growth in other developmental areas.
If you have concerns about your child's speech and language development, your pediatrician may provide a referral for further evaluation. In these cases its better to be safe than sorry. You can always make a call to a trusted speech therapist to discuss your child's specific situation.