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Old 06-20-2012, 05:13 PM   #1
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My 17 month old is not talking.

I am a new mom, so I am not really sure what to think about the fact that my son really is not talking. He says syllables like ma, da, ba, etc. and every once in a while it does sound like he says a word like ball. However, it is very seldom. I read to him every night and tell him what things are, but I am kind of concerned. Any advise?

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Old 06-20-2012, 05:34 PM   #2
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Does he understand what you say to him? Can you give him simple instructions or ask a simple question and he responds? (Ex get your shoes, where's the cat, do you want more, etc.) If so, I wouldn't worry. None of my kids talked hardly at all at that age (and I'm pregnant with #4 )
Some kids talk earlier, some talk later. He's likely working on a different skill right now give it a few more months before getting worried.
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Old 06-20-2012, 05:47 PM   #3
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Re: My 17 month old is not talking.

My 27 month old is the same.
Nothing to worry about, but I would try getting in contact with a speech/language specialist or a good program like Head Start.
Doesn't mean anything is wrong with him! Always better to catch things early though.
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Old 06-20-2012, 05:47 PM   #4
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Re: My 17 month old is not talking.

I agree - if he understands what you say and responds to noises (in other words, shows no signs of a hearing problem), there's probably nothing to worry about. My older DS hardly said any words or phrases until he was almost 2. Then in a period of about a month, he was speaking in full sentences. We moved to Germany shortly after his 2nd birthday, and by the time he was 3 he was fluently speaking both English and German.

If he still isn't saying much in a few weeks, and you still have concerns, just bring it up with his doctor at his 18 month check-up.
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Old 06-20-2012, 05:53 PM   #5
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Re: My 17 month old is not talking.

Not talking isn't always a sign that something is wrong. My DD started talking at 39 months old, and my son started talking at 20 months old.
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Old 06-20-2012, 05:58 PM   #6
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I was really concerned because my son didn't start trying words at all until 19 months, but now he is rapidly adding words to his vocabulary every day. Everyone was always asking me if I was going to take him in and I'm glad we waited and didn't pressure him. If your daughter responds to some simple phrases (my son only responded to "is your diaper dirty" by pulling on it for months) and makes eye contact and seems to hear fine I wouldn't worry.

ETA: I'm pretty sure a kid isn't considered "behind" until a ways past two.

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Old 06-20-2012, 07:04 PM   #7
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Re: My 17 month old is not talking.

There's nothing wrong with getting a speech eval if your worried. Most speech pathologists I know would rather get your child in early than waiting if he is behind. My MDD was not talking at 2 and I started the process through the school districts early childhood screening but by the time she started receiving help she was 2 and a half and screaming due to not being understood. She just got out of speech classes a year ago in 2nd grade.

YDS was not talking at 20 months when we started the process (hoping to not have the same problems) and he started speech play group just before he turned 2. He had great receptive skills but few expressive language skills. Now at 2 and a half he is already much further along than his sister was. He has a large vocab that we can usually understand if we know the context as well as many signs to help in communicating.
His younger sister on the other hand is almost 11 months and is already working on some words :lol:
If your LO needs help remember that it is in no way indicative of her intelligence. Both MDD and YDS are very intelligent with MDD reading several grades above her and YDS already can identify 3/4 of the alphabet as well as numbers to 10 and shapes and colors. His teacher wasn't going to assess him on these but was assessing older kids in the playgroup and he wanted his turn too :lol:
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Old 06-20-2012, 08:36 PM   #8
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Re: My 17 month old is not talking.

Quote:
Originally Posted by m0mof6 View Post
There's nothing wrong with getting a speech eval if your worried. Most speech pathologists I know would rather get your child in early than waiting if he is behind. My MDD was not talking at 2 and I started the process through the school districts early childhood screening but by the time she started receiving help she was 2 and a half and screaming due to not being understood. She just got out of speech classes a year ago in 2nd grade.

YDS was not talking at 20 months when we started the process (hoping to not have the same problems) and he started speech play group just before he turned 2. He had great receptive skills but few expressive language skills. Now at 2 and a half he is already much further along than his sister was. He has a large vocab that we can usually understand if we know the context as well as many signs to help in communicating.
His younger sister on the other hand is almost 11 months and is already working on some words :lol:
If your LO needs help remember that it is in no way indicative of her intelligence. Both MDD and YDS are very intelligent with MDD reading several grades above her and YDS already can identify 3/4 of the alphabet as well as numbers to 10 and shapes and colors. His teacher wasn't going to assess him on these but was assessing older kids in the playgroup and he wanted his turn too :lol:
I agree with this.

Evaluations are certainly not pressure. My daughter loves it. We've had 2 evaluations this week and she thinks visitors to play with her is awesome.

anyways, I can tell you that once she hit 18months, she did start having a huge burst of new words. It's really amazing and overnight. So, if you are wanting to wait a little while, hopefully you'll see some positive changes in the next 2 months.

I can say that when they did our initial speech evaluation at 14months, they gave me tools such as 'don't just give her what she needs, make her ask', and they had me start to really emphasize letters like 'BBBall' with a really strong B sound. UUUp with a really strong U sound, etc.

Mostly they just listen and try to interact with her, talk about her toys, teach you how to interact with the child in the best way.

Turns out, I think my daughter was fine and just a little behind in speech because she was so far ahead in gross motor. Now it's evened out a bit. But it certainly didn't hurt her or me to work with the speech therapist.

At 20 months, she still doesn't speak sentences, but she keeps adding new words on her own like 'apple' and 'pig' and such.
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Old 06-20-2012, 08:39 PM   #9
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DD1 was exactly like that at that age and like you I was a first time mom and was very worried. Add into that the fact that not talking was one of the first obvious symptoms that a friend of mine's daughter displayed that led to an autism diagnosis, and it really worried me.

Our family doctor was unconcerned and told me that because she was an only child with limited exposure to other children, she simply wasn't motivated to talk because daddy and Mommy anticipated her needs. She'd talk when she wanted to, her hearing was fine and she understood us well, but to be safe and to assuage my fears he suggested that if she was not making significant progress in her speech by 2 to take her to be evaluated. I also spoke to my friend and she pointed out that her daughter had other symptoms that they noted in retrospect that my daughter didn't have, so I felt better and decided to wait and see until she was 2.

Over the next six months she really didn't improve and she still mostly babbled with a handful of words sprinkled in. Then almost exactly 2 weeks before her birthday something changed. She started really paying attention to what we were saying and watching our faces while we spoke. Bam - she was picking up at minimum a new word a day. She started stringing them together very quickly after that and now at 4.5 she has a great vocabulary and I can't get her to shut up. She literally talks constantly, through meals, while pottying, over other people's conversations and I've even heard her talk in her sleep. She talks to herself, she talks to her feet, she talks to her imaginary friend George and his invisible family. You'd never suspect in a million years she was a late talker.

Now the plural of anecdote is not fact. Just because my child did not need intervention doesn't mean that yours doesn't. I think your little one is a little young to really be worried, but honestly there's no harm in having him evaluated. If there's nothing wrong, you'll feel a little silly, but you'll have that peace of mind, if there are issues to be addressed then you can start down that road, and it is better to address them sooner than later. Don't ignore your iinstinctsinstincts.

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Old 06-20-2012, 08:45 PM   #10
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Re: My 17 month old is not talking.

We were told to wait till two, which we did. The first eval said it was normal and we did a second one months later that said we have a "delay." If it is just a speech delay, I would not stress but after two get a therapist either through the county, private pay or insurance. The evaluations are no big deal. Some kids are just late talkers. Mine is and the speech is now coming in and its interesting as its pretty clear. We did private pay for a few months, now are on insurance and will be switching to a speech preschool (I don't want it for the speech so much as I liked what the program had to offer in terms of academics so if he talks fine, they will keep him for the rest of the year). In all honesty, after dealing with 4 speech pathologists, none are doing much more than we do at home. I like a bit of support but when we are at his sessions they are just doing all the things. (when we switch to the preschool he will get three days a week - one day seems worthless to me but I know its the right thing to do so we are doing it).

Also, Emily is right in her comments. Kids generally focus on 1-2 skills at a time (and this was some good advice we got) so your child's strength may be something completely different, like our child who has many strengths and they will just talk when they decide too. (and then you will be wishing they'd give you a break from all the talking)

We've also found the iPad apps for language, videos like Leap Frog and a few others (netflix and costco) are very helpful. We debate on how much to limit the iPad but our son is now repeating verbally a lot from it so there is a clear benefit.
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