speech delay — The Bump
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speech delay

My son is 2 and cannot say 2 word phrases.  He can repeat "snack" and "please", but cannot say "snack please" His vocab is also smaller than other kids his age.  He sees a SLP in 2 weeks for the first time.  What type of things will we do at these appts?  How long (on average) can it take for him to catch up?

And just for background info, he was enrolled in our states EI program at 18 mos bc he could only say 1 word at that time.  After a few months, he started to pick up a lot more words and so we ended his therapy there. 

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Re: speech delay

  • I am sitting through an EI visit right now! They are playing games and trying to get K to repeat phrases. At this age it is about using play to stimulate language. Right now they are playing connect four  - counting the dominos and trying to get him to repeat down. A few minutes ago they had a "birthday party" and sang happy birthday to am monkey.

    My older son was dx with a language disorder - Apraxia. He began receiving services @2. We later switched to private speech. These sessions consisted of him sitting at a table reading stories, repeating phrases and doing oral motor ex.

    It is hard to say how long it will take him to catch up. My 2 yo barely qualified for services and since he had tubes placed his speech is catching up quickly. Trev is 4.5 and is still catching up. He will probably receive services for a while. I have a blog about our journey - address in my sig. HTH. 


  • How long it will take for him to catch up depends on what the nature of his delay is.  My 2.5 year old also has a speech delay, and his SLP has diagnosed him with dyspraxia.  He started therapy in August and began attending a SN preschool December 1.  I'm told that speech development for dyspraxic kids, even with therapy, is very slow.  Between August and December, he maybe acquired a handful of "words" -- he generally can say only one sound associated with a word -- "oh" for open, "ou" for out, etc.  Since he started preschool, he's picked up a some more -- all done, hi, bye-bye, and sit come to mind. 

    Therapy generally consists of adult-led play, and requiring speech before something happens in the course of that play.  If he wants another ball for a toy, he is encouraged to make an attempt to say "ball" or "more".  The therapist will block a ball from coming out of a hole and encourage him to say "out" for her to move her finger to make it come out.  She'll block a button to make movement for a toy to start, and he'll have to attempt "push" in order to be allowed to push the button. 

    Zachary, 8.31.2007 * * * Adam, 3.24.2010<BR>

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  • Logan started therapy at around 19 months though I thought there was an issue since around 9 months when he didn't babble. When he started he could say "pa" for up and that was it.  Initially we had service through EI at home once a week and progress was slow. The working diagnosis was apraxia.  Looking back he had about 25 words right around 2, most of which were approximations or parts of words.   He did continue to make progress every week but about 2 months ago we switched to private therapy at the local hospital b/c Logan was so easily distracted at home. The therapist there thought it was more of a phonological disorder than apraxia.  

    Logan is now 2 1/2 and I'm amazed at how far he's come. I think it's a combination of age, therapy and A LOT of work at home. Since 18 months our days are all about pushing speech in some way. It used to be using his words and now it's about working on articulation.  He has way more words than I could even count and is using 4-5 word sentences.  

    Keep the faith, it can be a long and slow process. My suggestion would be to write down what he is saying every week or so. The list will continue to grow and you'll be amazed after 3-4 months the difference.  Don't be afraid to speak up if you don't think things are progressing. Good luck!  

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  • They will play on the floor and the SLP will work on eliciting language and speech.  She (or he) will be able to teach you techniques that she is finding successful with your child and suggest materials that may be good to have at home.  From session to session, the SLP will be assessing change and progress and will alter her approach to meet your child's needs.  Your DS will likely look forward to speech and have fun playing with new toys.  Without knowing your child, it is really hard to approximate the duration of therapy.  GL
  • imagesusanmosley:
    Your DS will likely look forward to speech and have fun playing with new toys.  Without knowing your child, it is really hard to approximate the duration of therapy.  GL

    This is very true.  Zach has gone from crying and being carried into a therapy room, to me having to show up right on time because he immediately runs back to play.

    There are a bunch of moms of kids with more significant delays on this board.  I don't want to to think this is always the case -- I know of other kids in my neighborhood who had less severe speech issues and graduated out of speech therapy before kindergarten.

    Zachary, 8.31.2007 * * * Adam, 3.24.2010<BR>

  • The SLP may or may not do a formal or informal speech &  language assessment to determine what your sons strengths and challenges are.  Therapy sessions can range anywhere from 30-60 minutes 1-3/week.  This will depend on how much time the SLP thinks your son may need to see progress.  I usually see children for 30 mins/once a week and set up a home program for the parents.  Being that your son is 2, therapy sessions will be play based and focus on what your son wants to do (child directed) while incorporating his goals.  The SLP will come up with goals, but make sure to express what you want out of his therapy sessions.  Also, I would recommend asking the SLP what you can do at home after each therapy session. 


    Its hard to say how long any child will be in therapy.  Many factors can contribute including the "severity" of the delay, how your child responds to treatment, and following a home program among other things.  It sounds like your son is definitely on the right track in that he is imitating you.  Try simplifying the words for him (ex. "more ball" becomes "mo ba").  Give him a ton of praise after any attempt!  Don't be discouraged if you don't see much change at first, just give him time and he will start to catch up! HTH and GL!

  • My now 4 yo son started speech at 2 because I felt he was delayed.   He has tons of works but didn't really have two word sentences.  Just one maybe (more juice).  He has about 10 words at 18 months which is still considered typical but I just knew by 2 that he needed help.  He pronounced a lot of words using the H sound which is not typical.  Har for Car etc.  By 3 he pretty much caught up 100% but he needed some articulation help so we do that now in therpay and he will most likely be done with speech by the Summer.  He was not diagnosed with anything.  It's all play based and gear toward what the child wants to do.  The SP is cery expressive and loud and visual which is very important.  It helps tons that a child sees in relation to the word.  Good luck, he will be okay. 
  • and sorry for all my typos!!
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