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How to Detect and Treat Your Toddler’s Speech Problems

If you think your toddler is having trouble developing speech properly, a speech pathology doctor can help ease your concerns or create a positive therapy regimen to get you back on track. Sometimes it can be hard to tell if a young child has a problem or is just developing differently. Each child develops at their own rate, and they have different personalities. One child may be particularly talkative and another may have excellent speaking skills but just be more reserved. It’s easy to worry about your child, but by maintaining good communication with your doctor, you can address any issues, should they arise.

For a young child, some speech problems are typical, such as difficulty making certain sounds or periods of not speaking much due to playfulness or shyness. If you have reason to believe there may be a problem beyond the normal circumstances, take a few notes before your child’s next doctor visit. The more information that can be provided to the doctor, the better diagnosis he will be able to make through speech pathology. Start with words that your child understands. Pay attention to how well they understand when you ask questions, tell stories, and interact with them.

It is said that it is quite normal for young children to fully understand words, but not have the skills to use them. It takes time to develop vocabulary. Notice how much they talk when they interact with you and what other things they do to make your point. If your child wants something, he may just not know the words. Speech pathology supports that if they use complex gestures, such as grabbing your hand and walking towards an item or pointing to something just out of reach, then they are on the right track. It means they are learning. Once they have understanding, children usually begin to speak within a short time. It might help to praise them when they use words, rather than gestures.

Speech pathology studies show that making certain sounds in the English language is complicated and difficult for most young children to do correctly. Some medical professionals believe that you should encourage them to try it. If he makes a mistake, praise him for his effort and gently repeat the word with the correct pronunciation. Pay attention to how your words are formed and if there seems to be a problem with the formation of any particular sounds. Common sense dictates that with practice, they will soon get it right. However, it might be smart to mention it to your doctor if you notice an ongoing problem.

To assess whether your child is developing at a normal rate or needs a little help, the doctor will perform some simple tests. The field of speech pathology has some benchmarks by which they can measure your child’s aptitude. The information you provide about your daily interactions is key. A hearing test can be used, along with some simple interactions for the doctor to test cognitive levels. In many cases, the child is fine and simply needs more time to continue on her path. In other cases, the problems can be adjusted with simple therapy methods. Often children continue to develop, leaving no trace of the former problem.

Remember to consult your doctor before taking any treatment or medical remedy.


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