Several mothers complain of their kids not being able to form proper sentences and even words up to 3 or 4 years of age. Speech delay in kids is commonly known as oral-motor problems which make it difficult to coordinate tongue and lips resulting in speech delay, stammering and articulation.
Ms. Iqra Javed is a speech and language pathologist in Lahore who specializes in helping patients through speech and language therapies. In this session with oladoc, she talks about language disorders in children, in particular – speech delay, stammering, autism, and articulation.
Q.1: Ideally, when should a child start to talk? What is delayed speech in children?
For a child of a healthy birth, the common speech milestone standards are set to hearing properly until six months and giving bumbling expressions (meaningless sounds). In the first year, a child usually knows the meaning of one word and is able to speak it. In 15 months, a child learns to speak about 30-50 words. In 2 years, the word count increases to 200-300 words. In 3 years’ time, a child learns about 75% of speech.
Q.2: What are the causes of speech delay?
The most common causes are premature birth, weight below normal standard at the time of birth and delayed cry at the time of birth. Speech delay can also be caused by hearing loss. In developed countries, evaluation and hearing screening are done at birth unlike in Pakistan.
Early detection and intervention make the condition manageable. Some children also have ear infections that hamper their ability to hear sounds of particular frequencies. Moreover, the communication gap is also a significant cause; research shows that a child has to hear one word about 3000 times to speak it.
Q.3: What is speech therapy?
Speech can be defined as the production of meaningless sound, with time child learns to combine speech to make words, phrases and sentences. Language is receptive as well as expressive. Speech therapy is aimed at overcoming communication disorder that hampers a child’s ability to hear sounds correctly.
Q.4: What is autism?
Autistic children cannot communicate, they have repetitive restrictive behaviors. These behaviors include hand flapping, head banging, screaming, speech delay, talking on toes and avoiding eye contact. These symptoms can be recognized by parents if they check the frequency of above-mentioned behaviours.
Q.5: What speech disorders do people suffer after a stroke?
There are three types of speech disorders people usually develop after a stroke. Dyspraxia; patients are unable to eat, the food escapes to the nasal cavity, they have a wet voice after eating, they are unable to chew properly due to weak muscles.
Aphasia, it is receptive and expressive disorder. The patient is unable to follow the commands of others and is unable to express themselves properly. Dysarthria, the patient can understand and express but their expressive abilities are very limited due to disturbed muscles. They are unable to form words and convey their feelings to others.
If you want to learn more about speech delay in children, watch the full video below. You can find and book an appointment with the best language pathologist. You can book an appointment via the website, mobile app or by calling our helpline at 042-3890-0939 for assistance to find the RIGHT professional for your concerns.