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Are you worried your child might have a speech delay?

Speech delay as per age groups-

At 2 yrs old- if the child uses gestures over words to communicate or they babble and their immediate needs are difficult to understand, or if they have difficulty understanding simple instructions.

At 3 yrs old- the child won’t ask for things by name, and it would be difficult to understand the child even if you live with them.

At 4 yrs old- the child has difficulty learning new words, they often complete sentences with general words like 'stuff' or 'things or they would miss out important words out of sentences.

Is speech delay curable?

Yes, speech delay can be curable with timely intervention when it is due to underlying conditions like developmental delay, hearing disability, or lack of psychosocial development. If diagnosed, timely speech delay can be cured and it can help the development of the child properly and prevent any social or educational lag the child might face due to speech delay.

What causes speech delay in toddlers?

There can be several causes of speech delay few of them are-

  • Hearing problem.

  • Intellectual delay.

  • Lack of stimulation in the environment around them.

  • Neglect or abuse.

  • Autism spectrum disorder.

  • Incoordination in muscles involved in speech.

Does TV cause speech delay?

Yes, TV can cause speech delay, if it takes up the time the child can be spending while solving puzzles, playing, or interacting with you. But television can also help cognitive and motor development, if the TV time is not interfering with your spending time with the child, then an hour or two of television can’t be harmful, just make sure to interact with the child and perform interactive activities like singing, reading, grocery shopping as it can help them learn naming objects, and reading rhymes with them.

Can ADHD cause speech delay?

Yes, children with ADHD can have speech delay, as the part of the brain involved in ADHD i.e., the frontal lobe is also involved in the development of speech, a child with ADHD has too many thoughts and speak very fast without thinking clearly and hence their speech may sound unedited if you suspect speech delay in your child it’s always a good idea to visit a speech-language pathologist or pediatrician just to rule out any underlying condition.

Did I cause my child's speech delay?

The environment around the child plays a major role in speech development, if the environment is not stimulating enough, for instance, if you are not giving adequate time to your child due to any reason it can lead to speech delay. You need to make time for your kid and make sure you perform activities with them like singing, reading to them, naming everyday objects, etc.

Can a child with speech delays catch up?

Yes, in 70% to 80% of cases with timely intervention a child will catch up with speech development and reach all the milestones as per his or her age group. So, if you feel there is a speech delay in the child, kindly visit a pediatrician or a speech-language pathologist as they will help the child with speech development and help them communicate better.

What helps with a speech delay?

  • Communication is one of the most important things in a child with speech delay, talk to your child a lot even if it is one-sided initially, the child will know you are talking and will try imitating you.

  • If the child speaks two words mostly then use many two-word phrases like instead of ball say your ball, yellow ball, want the ball, etc, and you can throw in easy three-word phrases as well.

  • Ask open-ended questions that can’t be answered as yes/no.

  • If they say something wrong, correct them by repeating that word rather than saying no.

  • These actions can also help you improve speech delays at home.

Should I worry about my 2-year-old not talking?

Look for these few signs in your child:

  • Does the kid point at objects they want?

  • Does your child try to communicate with you non-verbally?

  • Does your child have to understand what you say?

  • Do they react when you call their name?

  • If you notice your child is not doing any of these things it can be indicative of speech delay.

Can homeopathy help with a speech delay?

Yes, homeopathy in combination with speech therapy can be helpful with speech delay. There are several homeopathic medicines that can help in improving motor coordination, developing the nervous system, and improving the condition of the vocal apparatus as well but with speech therapy, the results will be better.

Does speech delay run in the family?

Yes, speech delay can run in family as a few disorders like specific language impairment, stuttering, and autism spectrum disorder can be hereditary hence if someone in the family has any of such disorders you should be on the lookout for symptoms of speech delay and visit a pediatrician or speech-language pathologist.

What are the symptoms of speech delay?

If your child-

  • by 12 months: isn't using gestures, such as pointing

  • by 18 months: they prefer gestures over vocalizations to communicate

  • by 2 years: they repeatedly say few words only and have trouble communicating more than their immediate needs

  • they can't follow simple directions

  • the child has an unusual tone of voice (such as raspy or nasal sounding)

What is the difference between autism and speech delay?

One major difference is that speech delay is a symptom and autism is a condition. In speech delay, the child does things as per social interests and seeks appreciation but in autism, the child often follows self-interests and they do things based on how they feel.

A child with a speech delay will try to communicate but a child with autism will not try to communicate; they often avoid social settings.

References :

The connection between ADHD, speech delays, motor skill delays, sensory processing disorders, and sleep issues by Donna Mac

Homeopathic Treatment for Speech Delay by Dr. Vikas Sharma MD


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