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2 1/2 Year Old Son With Delayed Speech 2 1/2 Year Old Son With Delayed Speech

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  #1  
Unread 01-31-2003, 06:56 PM
2 1/2 Year Old Son With Delayed Speech

I have a 2 1/2 year old son who has delayed speech. He is having a speech evaluation done on Tuesday and I am a bit nervous about it. I have known since this past summer that he needed it but they couldn't get me in till now.

When the first pediatrician out of four in the practice mentioned it I figured it was something he would grow out of (this was this summer) and never really thought more about it. Then my son got sick with a throat infection and had to see the remaining three doctors in the group within two weeks time and each one of them told me to get him checked out by a speech therapist.

So I am sitting here nervous wondering what is wrong with him, I worry it is something I did when I was pregnant, I also worry that he may have gotten this passed down from my husband or I. I am hoping they will test him and say that he will fine or will out grow it.

I know this isn't a big deal since it isn't a life threatning disease or anything but it crushes me to see him get so frustrated when trying to tell me something. After five minutes of him trying his best to tell me what it is he wants he will kind of hop/jump in place, cry, and hit himself in the head once or twice if I don't understand him. His words are all jibberish, like a whole different language that only he knows, except the words that he does know how to say, which isn't many. Has anyone else had this problem?

I guess I wouldn't worry if it weren't for the fact he just gets so upset because he really is trying to tell me things but I just don't understand what he is saying. It has gotten so bad that he throws horrible temper tantrums. He is a very laid back child and very easy going. He only throw the tantrums for two reasons, one because I told him no to something, typical response of a 2 1/2 year old to that...and two when I don't understand him. Other than that is he a very happy well adjusted child!

I don't know what to do about the tantrums though. If it is a tantrum over something I told him he couldn't have I will just walk away after explaining why he can't have it and he will quiet down after a bit. When it is due to a lack of communication I am at a loss on how to handle it. If anyone had this problem or has some advice on it I sure would appreciate it. Thanks for listening and letting me vent. I will feel much better I am sure when Tuesday rolls around.

Oh and one more thing, they told me the evaluation lasts for 2 hours ! Just how do they expect to get a 2 1/2 year old to sit there for that long let alone keep his attention? I am looking forward to seeing that trick done ! Thanks again!

Jennifer
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  #2  
Unread 02-03-2003, 08:58 AM
2 1/2 Year Old Son With Delayed Speech

Hi Jennifer, I just wanted to wish you luck at the appointment tomorrow. My daughter worries about the same thing with her almost 3 year old son. He does the same things. She's even going to get his hearing checked just to make sure everything is alright. I have a nephew who I didn't hear say one word until he was about 5 or so. (I was told he talked, but I never heard him). He's now in junior high and talks just fine. Hopefully all the tests will go well. I'll keep you and your son in my thoughts tomorrow. Make sure and let us know how everything goes.
  #3  
Unread 02-03-2003, 10:22 AM
2 1/2 Year Old Son With Delayed Speech

Jennifer:

Does he follow orders when you give them (well, within 2 yo standards, anyway )? That will tell you about his ability to process heard information, which is half the equation.

What has been very successful with other kids with communication problems is American Sign Language, and I would ask the speech therapist about it. It seems to involve different pathways in the brain, and is often easier for children with speech processing problems to use for communication.

You could probably also begin to work out your own family version of sign language to ease the frustration on both sides. I can imagine how difficult it is for a two year old to know what he wants but to have no way to communicate it to you. So maybe work through with him some particular motions for "cookie" for example, or "toys", or "outside" -- if he understands you while you speak, that will help his end of things enormously!

Speech is an incredibly complex action...and it's not surprising, especially in boys, to see problems. My nephew was late in everything, including speech, and is in therapy in the first grade. When he started first grade, the teacher was concerned, as his speech appeared so delayed, and his birthday was in November, which made him very young to be starting. But this is also a child who plays chess and is highly intelligent from a fine motor skill and engineering perspective...and his speech is getting the help he needs.

Starting early is only going to help your son. As far as a two-hour evaluation, it's eminently "do-able" -- the pathologist has a whole arsenal of toys, all with a purpose, and they're pretty used to this! And no, it's NOTHING that you or your DH did, before, during, or after pregnancy...the brain is a very complex system of wiring, and sometimes not all the signals develop at the same rate. Most of us have some area that just isn't quite as strong as the others, and speech problems in boys are very common.

Do ask about a sign language alternative...it's not that difficult...to help with some immediate communication needs as your son progesses through his therapy. It may well ease so much of that frustration that he feels in not being able to communicate with you!

Good luck Tuesday!



Audrey
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  #4  
Unread 02-03-2003, 01:39 PM
2 1/2 Year Old Son With Delayed Speech

NancH,
I have had others tell me the exact same thing, that someone they knew didn't talk until they past age three and not for me to worry. I am so glad that we only have one more day to wait to find out what we can do to help him. At least I am getting him the help just as your daughter is so that is half the battle there. Thanks so much for your words the helped to reasure me.

AudreyS,
Yes he completely understands what we are saying and will do what we tell him to do like put his toys away, put the wrapper in the trash, and so on.

I took a college level ASL class my senior year in high school and recently thought about trying out some of the signs with him to see if it helped. I will have to see what the therapist says tomorrow and if he/she wants me to do it then I will. I am very lucky that I already know some ASL so it will be less stressful to teach him.

The reason I worried if it was something I did while pregnant is because I was pregnant for a month and didn' t know it. I got pregnant December 10th, I know the exact date because like I told others on here sex for me before I had my son was PAINFUL so we didn't do it much. The 10th was a day after my period had stopped and we had unprotected sex, we never did that before, but for some reason we did, I guess we figured it would be ok. Then in the middle of the month I started having kidney pain from a stone trying to pass. I had three IVPs within two weeks time and a CAT Scan. Dec 22 I had to have surgery to have it removed. I came home from the hospital sick as a dog and on all kinds of meds for pain and bladder spasms. The whole time I was pregnant and didn't know it. I was on other meds to for various health issues too. Then in January I found out I was pregnant and did everything by the book from there on. SOOOO I worry that in that one month I may have done damage to him and this is what is coming out now..his speech is the damage.

Anyway, we will get answers tomorrow and I will pray it all works out. I was told by my OB that with all I had gone through while pregnant I may end up having a misscarriage, but I didn't, he was born healthy and big. So I know in my heart and soul that God wanted us to have this child and that is why we named him Nathaniel, which means Gift Of God and that he is. I will do what ever it takes to make sure the little guy makes it ok in this world. What are moms for right? Thanks for letting me ramble on again! Thanks for all the input...I will let you know after we get back tomorrow what they say.

Jennifer
  #5  
Unread 02-03-2003, 02:12 PM
2 1/2 Year Old Son With Delayed Speech

Jennifer, I hope you read this before your appointment tomorrow.
We adopted our two children who are now adults, and both of them were supposed to be normal, healthy infants. It turns out that both of them had certain problems; my son with his A.D.D. and now Non-verbal learning disability, and my daughter with
her severe speech delay and articultion problems as well as
an auditory processing deficit.
I was told that my daughter should be saying ten words
by three. We were all aware that her speech was delayed,and
we were watching it. Her receptive language, what she
understood seemed good. Her expressive language was very
delayed. We waited until she just turned three, and decided it was time for a speech evaluation. It is possible that your
son may catch up quickly with his language by his third birthday.
My daughter did not. At three, the speech pathologist found her
to be severely delayed in language with severe articulation
problems. I was very disappointed, but hopeful that with early
intervention, she would catch up. My daughter had 9 ear infections during a 1 1/2 yr. period, all treated with medication.
I kept asking the pediatrician if she should have tubes in her ears, and he said no, not as long as meds clear it up. However,
during this time she had extra fluid in her ear and heard garbled speech. My theory is that she tuned out of listening to language
since it was garbled anyway. She also later was diagnosed with an auditory processing problem. I took my daughter to speech therapy twice a week for seven years. It was a very postive experience for her because she enjoyed the new challenges, and the therapist was very positive with her. In school, my daughter had to work harder, but with my daily help, she did well in school. Today, she is a freshman in college. I still worry about her in
those huge auditorium classes where it is lecture. My daughter is about 100% visual learner; she needs to read it or see it to remember instead of hearing it.
I got a little side tracked. I just wanted to show you that
even if there is a severe language delay, it does not mean that your child will not succeed in school or life. Your child may not need any theray. Or, if he does, congratulate yourself instead of feeling guilty that you caught it early, and he is getting help!!
Around Christmastime, there was a speech therapist posting
here at hystersisters. She was on the non-hormone board.
I don't know if she is still around.
It was exciting as my daughter was learning new
words, practicing her therapy assignments with me,
and learning how to talk!!!! Today, when my dauhter is
going on and on about her need for independence, I sort of
miss those days when she could not talk. Just kidding.
  #6  
Unread 02-03-2003, 02:28 PM
2 1/2 Year Old Son With Delayed Speech

Hi Jennifer. My now 4 year old daughter started speech thereapy at age 2 1/2 due to severe ear infections for about a year. the dr. said she wad only hearing about 70-80% of what we were saying. She also had tubes put in after the year of ear infections. (never had another ear infection after tubes went in!!) They came to our house for the assessment and it did take a couple hours. But they sat on the floor and played with her and tried to get her to say a few things, mostly just observed her. She has been taking speech thereapy ever since, two times a week, and everyone around her is amazed at the results. Her speech has improved dramatically. You may want to have your child's hearing checked. My daughter didn't have any hearing loss, but she did have speech delay. Good luck to you.
  #7  
Unread 02-03-2003, 10:06 PM
2 1/2 Year Old Son With Delayed Speech

Locki,

Whatever they find out tomorrow I will be fine with. He does say at least 18 words, some more clearly than others. He has never had an ear infection though he would tug on his ear and I would take him to the doctor each time but nothing was ever found. I finally realized that when he is sleepy he will tug on his ear and suck his thumb.

I am sorry to hear that you had your struggles and problems but thank the Lord they grew up into fine young adults. My husband said that I may regret taking him to a therapist cause once he starts talking he may never shut up. That is what I do !

Tash24,

Like I told Locki my son has never had an ear infection, though I thought he did a time or two. I am hoping they will check his hearing or ask that we make an appointment for it. I don't think he has a hearing problem, but I could be wrong, because when he is in the pantry getting into things he shouldn't be and I get up from the couch to check on him he can hear me fine as can be and will run out yelling "no no no no no" meaning "no mom don't go in there I didn't do anything honest" and when I go in sure enough there is flour all over the floor or cookies half eaten . So he may have selective hearing. You know I have tried every single baby lock/covers for the door knobs and he figures them all out so now we have to go put up locks up at the top of every door so he can't get into them. Oh well....boys will be boys.

Thank you both for replying to my post with your own experiences I really appreciate it! I will post here tomorrow after we get back in the late afternoon if I have any news on what they think is wrong. I just pray he will talk/play with them. He is VERY shy and will only go to blondes...weird I know but again boys will be boys! Thanks again!

Jennifer
  #8  
Unread 02-04-2003, 08:09 PM
Unhappy - 2 1/2 Year Old Son With Delayed Speech Found A Name For What He Has!

Well, I took Nathaniel to his speech evaluation today and they think he has a disorder called Developmental Apraxia. I am glad to finally have a name for what he is going through but I don't like what it is!

Definition is as follows: It is disorder of the nervous system that affects a child's ability to sequence and say phonemes, syllagles, and words which occurs in the absence of any muscle weakness or paralysis. Rather, the problem lies with the inability to plan the movements of articulators for the purposes of on command speech. It means that the child has difficulty making speech movements when he is consciously aware of trying to do so or in instances when he is requested to do so by others. The same speech movements (words) are prduced spontaneously with no difficulty at all.

The next step is to have his hearing checked. I don't know if this will happen before or after my surgery, they are very booked up. This isn't exactly the best timing for me considering I am about to go through medical menopause. I just worry about how my body is going to react to that and now this comes along! I will have to work with him all day everyday off and on with his speech. Part of me worries about this, and another part thinks it will keep my mind of the menopause and the side effects of it like the hot flashes, and depression. What do you all think?

As it stands now he will have to have speech therapy at least twice a week. We aren't sure if the insurance will cover this at all, some do some don't. It is $180 a pop but like I told them, you can't put a price tag on my sons speech.

Please pray for us! I am just thankful that it isn't a life threatning illness that I am having to deal with. It is just a speech problem, that is going to take time to work through. At least I am a patient mother, the therapist was thrilled at how I intereacted with him. She said she could tell I was patient and that that is VERY important when dealing with children who have this disorder. She also told me to start teaching him simple ASL (American Sign Language) signs so I am kind of excited about that. That is pretty much all I can tell you at this point...I will let you know if anything new arises. THANKS!

Jennifer
  #9  
Unread 02-04-2003, 08:47 PM
2 1/2 Year Old Son With Delayed Speech

Jennifer, Thanks for letting us know how the appointment went. It sounds like you've got a good plan of action to help your son. I think he'll do great and he'll help you along the way too. I'll be keeping both of you in my thoughts and prayers. Good Luck. Keep us informed as to how he's doing.
Take care!
  #10  
Unread 02-04-2003, 09:29 PM
HI Jen

I'm a little late reading your post but wanted to offer
my support.

I have a 12 year old son who was Dxed with ADHD
at 3. He had all the developmental delays earlier though
but they didn't dx anything until he got older to see if he
got better or worse. Later, we knew it had to
be much more than ADHD, (Long long story but I'm
trying to cut it down to basic) at age 8 he was
dxed with a form of autism Pervasive Developmental
DIstorder. It's similar to aspergers syndrome.
There are lots of resorces for information on the internet dealing
with childrens development disorders.
One place I'm a regular on (besides this site) is
Parentsoup at Ivillage
Here's a link with a list of their messege boards.
www.parentsoup.com/boards

There are other channels on there as well, like parents place,
health etc etc.... You ought to stop by there when you get a
chance. Good Luck to you and your wonderful Son. rebecca
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