Speech Therapy

Research on Late Talking

“Late Talking” is a behavioural trait arising due to different clinical conditions and sometimes due to certain non-clinical factors. A ‘late talker’ lags in ‘talking’ in few instances in comparison to age mates, which graduates to a matter of concern in few cases while gets normal in others with time.

Majority of cases, do not need any alarming reactions as most kids develop speech at their own pace and many develop talking faster than others.

– ‘Diane Paul-Brown’, PhD, Director of Clinical issues at the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA)

Few Speech Milestones in infants:

  • Communication Disorder of any kind is within 15%-25% of children
  • The possibility of boys being late talkers are 3 times more than girls. It is because boys focus on learning one skill at a time and developing language skills better.
  • Kids may be called “late-talkers” if their speaking is less than 10 words by 18-20 months or fewer than 50 words by 21-30 months of age.
  • Twins communicate quite well with each other without words. So they do not feel like speaking soon.
  • Toddlers living with talkative siblings who are older sometimes feel like they do not need to talk.

Treatment for late talkers:

  • Focusing is needed on stimulation on words, endings, speech sounds and sentences to improve the language skills.
  • If late onset of words is the only factor then child will recover in a relatively short time.
  • All children who are challenged by nature can learn.
  • Focus on truly functional skills.
  • Proper coordination is maintained among parents, special preschool teachers, speech-pathologists and educators.
  • There are many unproven and sometimes expensive treatments (like-use of muscle exercises, special diets, chelation, massage). They are offered to families that do not involve in direct treatment.
  • Talking late may be a developmental condition or may be a symptom of any severe condition. Many may normalise without treatment and others with a treatment program.
  • Parents need to speak directly to kids instead of using questions because a better method to teach language is by speaking words.
  • The specialist therapists analyze the child’s speaking abilities and counsel parents.
  • The therapy services may be free or cost quite low under provisions of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act.
  • On suspecting a hearing problem, child must be referred to an audiologist.

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