Severe expressive language delay

Tara - posted on 03/17/2011 ( 9 moms have responded )

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My 2.5yr old was diagnosed yesterday with severe expressive language delay. His receptice language is normal. His imaginitive play is right where it should be. He just talks like an 18 month old. I have guilt, mainly because I wasn't shocked by the diagnosis. He is my 3rd child, he seemd right on trach with everything until 18 months. Thats when his language didn't really progress. So for the last year I think I was in denial. I made excuses, third child, doted on alot by older siblings. He hasn't has to talk as much as them. He wants something, he has 2 very attentive parents and very attentive older siblings(6yrs and 12yrs) to wait on him. He also sat early, crawled early, walked early... Has always been ahead of the gmae physically, I'd think to myself he is just concentrating on the physical aspects of his development... Speech will come. Finally I made the appt. He does alot of "jargoning" and does say quite a few words, but not as many or as clear as he should. he puts words together but they flow together like one word "wa-de-do" Means "what did you do?"(if he sees you have a scratch or appear hurt).

So he could have been getting help much sooner, but I stalled and didn't get him assessed until now.

He is going in for a hearing test but I'm sure he can hear. I can call him from aother room and he comes. He understands and follows directions even if he is not looking at you when the words are spoken. At night we whisper things to each other and he giggles when I whisper something funny.

I feel sad for me and for him, I also feel the neeed to explain to people that he has a expressive language delay.. why.. I don't know. I shouldn't care what others think.

He is extrodinarily resourceful at letting you know what he wants. Just the other day he wanted kraft dinner. he brought the box and placed it in his dads hand. He had just eaten so we said no not right now. He pushed the box back towards his dad. His dad explained again why we weren't making KD right then. He then ran off to the kitchen grabbed a pot and the strainer and brought it back for us...

Anyway this is my story. The speech and language pathologist that saw him suggested putting him in daycare(twice weekly) so he can be around other kids his age. SHe will reasses him in July.

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Sophia - posted on 09/15/2012

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my son stop trying to say words at 2 years old.. I put him in a daycary for children with delays and he did well. He started to say words at 4 years old . within 6 months he was talking more than just words. I have to tell him to stop talking maybe 2 to 3 times a week. At 5 he was too much lips now at 6 he always have to have the last word in. He is in special education class but I would have to tell you --- you would never know. gets the same work as his peers just need more time to finish. Still gets speech for social skills.... He was doing the same things your son is doing. talk to him alot ..

Ashley - posted on 04/20/2011

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My child has expressive Aphaisa (delay) Due to Hydrocephalus (water on the brain) She understands everything we say but can not speak & has trouble communicating in other ways also. The doctor is probably right about putting him in a preschool setting with other kids it may help him alot. If not then you can say you tried that & then start pushing for speech services so he can learn more & find other ways to express himself. My daughter is seven now & from experience if he doesn't learn how to express himself the older he gets the more frustrated he will become.

Crystal - posted on 03/22/2011

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I have a similar situation myself. My son is 3.5 years old, he was diagnosed with severe speech delays, but this was due to partial hearing loss that no one caught until last year around his third birthday.
It's extraordinarily frustrating when you're trying to get him to understand, or vice versa. Thankfully, he's patient - for a three-year-old, so we try, try, and try again. We'll be getting him into preschool with a speech therapist to work on these delays.

Sarah - posted on 03/21/2011

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You could be right...it might not be as "severe" as the SLP thinks it is. My son had a 12 month expressive delay. He is now so far ahead of the curve in some areas that I almost feel bad that he gets special needs preschool and private speech therapy. Both of those end in a few months.

It is sad to have a child with a delay, but it sounds like you are doing everything in your power to help him work through his delay. In my son's case, we ran PBS and Nick Jr in the background all day long if we were home...if we weren't home we were playing silly kids songs in the van...or he was watching Signing Time videos in his portable DVD player...we bought him toys from Leapfrog. I predict that by the time your little guy gets to Kindergarten, he will be totally caught up--possibly even ahead of his peers like my son is!!

Janine - posted on 03/21/2011

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My five year old has that same problem ans we didn't know until he was three. we did get him a special ed school and they helped him talk with speech therapy and it has helped. there is nothing that you could have done.

Erin - posted on 03/20/2011

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You don't particularly need daycare. Try to find a mom's group in your area. Use meetup.com to find something. I was doing this with my son for a while, but we've had quite a battle with colds this year. I wish I could put my son in daycare as well, but it's not really possible right now. I think exposure to other kids is most important. And if you feel he's doing ok, that's what matters most. But speech therapy could help if you're able to get it.

Tara - posted on 03/20/2011

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Thanks to both of you for your responses. The more I think about it, I'm not sure it is as severe as she thinks it is. The word "severe" is scary. He is a shy guy around stangers anyways and had a fever from a cold that was starting. He didn't say much to her, just one or 2 words. She asked how many words he said.. I wasn't even able to come up with a ballpark figure. I came home and in 5 minutes made a list of just over 100 words that he uses.. and uses well enough that the vast majority of people would understand him. I'm sure he has more but that was the ones I could come up with in a short period of time. He has other words too but I only listed ones he said clearly. He also has phrases he uses. "all gone" "what'd you do" "where's (insert word here)?" "Have bath" "go in" Among others.. I know still far behind for a 30month old, but I think its not as bad as originally thought.
Also she wants him to start day care twice weekly. I would love to do that but I'm not sure how it will work. I looked in to subsidy but it goes by last years income tax. My husband lost his job and makes 1/3 of what he made last year at his new job BUT they will still go by the amount we made last year. we live in the country and have had to make cut backs. we are down to one vehicle. I am going to try to get him in day care because I want to give him all the opportunities he needs to excel and improve his expressive language.. But its so hard. Its very stressful. Plus.. I feel sad/ dissapointed. I guess we all want perfect children and it takes awhile to wrap your head around a delay of any kind.
He is such a charming fellow thought! He has an alphabet book.. The "C" in the book is representedb y a cartoon clown. Today.. Looking throught that book, we get to the clown and with a huge smile on his face points to it and says "daddy?" then starts to laugh and says"Nooooo... Not Daddy!" He has an amazing sense of humor for such a young fellow. I've started to notice the frustration he has when he can't communicate.. we do use some sign language, have since he was just a tiny baby. All of the words he could sign he now says, so we stopped signing. I'll have to learn some more signs for things that will help him communicate his wants and needs better. MAybe to help reduce frustration. I am sure he has so much he wants to say but just isn't able to... thats sad.

Erin - posted on 03/20/2011

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I have a somewhat similar situation with my son. He just turned two last week and still doesn't have any spoken words. He does have a lot of other problems, but this does get frustrating at times. We use a little bit of sign langauge and are working on learning more to use. The only problem is that he doesn't really use the sign language much. He is improving in that though. We have found it to be very helpful though. His receptive langauge is behind also. But just get the help you need, and even if you feel that you are late, it's better late than never!

Sarah - posted on 03/18/2011

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I know how you feel. My youngest was just a few weeks past his 2nd birthday when I finally got someone to believe me that there was something WRONG. I had known that something was wrong at 15-18 months, but everyone brushed it off.

At 27 months old he had a 12 word vocabulary. If he learned a 13th word, he lost one of the first 12. Someone suggested we teach him sign language to bridge the gap until the words came, and he picked up 12 signs the first week.

from age 27 months until age 3 he got 30 minutes of private speech therapy 2 times a week. At 3 years old he started special needs preschool where he gets group therapy 20 minutes a week, and we pay for 30 minutes of private therapy a week. he is now 5 and a half years old and in his third year of preschool. He has been reading for 18 months...as near as we can tell, he reads on the level of a child at the end of first grade.

google "developmental verbal apraxia" that is what my son has/had. Most people give me a funny look when I tell them he is in therapy for a speech delay!

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