My son is 2 and half years and he has only picked up thirty words. Should we be worried

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Krista - posted on 11/24/2011

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Liz and Elfrieda: two of the things that stood out were a) frustrating him a bit and b) to point to my mouth when pronouncing a new word.

Let's say for example, if we were playing by rolling a ball back and forth. He can say "ball", but I wanted him to say "ball, please" (because before now, he wasn't stringing any words together). So, before he'd roll the ball to me, I'd say "ball PLEASE", while pointing to my mouth and over-enunciating. And I wouldn't roll it back until he'd made at least some sort of effort to say two words. (Usually he'd get his wires crossed and would say "Ball-ball!" or "peese-peese!", but that was okay.) Or, if he wanted milk (he knows the sign for it), I'd hold up the milk jug, and say, "Is this what you want? MILK? Do you want milk?" And eventually he'd be thinking, "Yes, for the love of all that's holy, woman! I want some freaking milk!", and would nod and say, "mih". And I'd reward the effort and say, "Yeah! Milk! Here you go, sweetie!" Basically, you want to frustrate them just enough that they're not melting down, but enough that it motivates them to speak up and tell you what they want.

And the other thing was the pointing to right below my mouth, so that he could watch the shapes my mouth was making when I spoke. I find that it helps him to focus better on what I'm saying.

The way his vocabulary is exploding, it's hard to say if he would have done that at this point anyway, or if the exercises sped things along. But I DO think it helped quite a bit.

Krista - posted on 11/23/2011

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Is he combining words yet? Either way, it's worthwhile to take him to be evaluated by a speech therapist. My son was pretty much at the same stage as yours, and there wasn't a MAJOR problem, but yes...they did say that he had a slight delay, and gave me some fantastic at-home exercises to try, in order to encourage him to speak more. It's already starting to pay off. Just in the last two days, he's said about 5 new words.

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[deleted account]

You will probably find out that everything is OK with your son, but I would have him checked. When my oldest daughter was his age I also was worried and was told she was fine--the one suggestion that I got was to make her tell me what she wanted and not to let her point or grunt. She had to try and say the word and when she did and it was not excatly right we would repeat the word to her the correct way.

Anne - posted on 11/29/2011

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My son didn't talk until after his 2nd birthday. I was super frustrated. By the time he was 4, he was a none-stop talker. We always say that the only reason we are sending him to preschool is to get a break from him talking!!!

[deleted account]

Kids pick up things at different paces. My daughter had only picked up a few words even at 3. Now, she is 5 and is quite the charter box, its amazing. She can tell stories for 2 hours straight. Give him more time, encourage him and be patient.

Krista - posted on 11/24/2011

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That's exactly what I was doing too, Elfrieda. We mothers are SO good at reading our kids, that we're almost TOO good at it. So they don't really need to talk.

So sometimes we have to play dumb in order to get them to step up their game.

Liz - posted on 11/24/2011

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Thanks Krista. Makes a lot of sense what you have suggested and I think this will help us a lot. I can relate with you Elfrieda!

Elfrieda - posted on 11/24/2011

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I think I need to frustrate my little one more.



I guess when I can almost always understand what my son is "saying", I don't feel like he needs to talk, but he truly does need words.



"oh no, you're crying! What happened?"

*T points at corner of table, holds head, looks at ball*

"Oh, you were trying to get the ball and bumped your head on the table?"

"wahhh!"

"Do you need a kissie?"

*inclines head for kiss on appropriate spot*

"You need to be careful. This is a corner."

*strokes table corner "ow"*

"That's right, corners are sharp."

"ow"

"Yes, ow. Now let's find the ball. I'll reach under the table"

*makes a straining noise while I flail around among the chair legs - "eeeee"

"Here's the ball!"

"ba!"

"Now kick it back to me."

"ki" *hysterical laughter*



And to me we've had a full conversation, but actually there was very little that he said. I'll work on the frustrating part. Thanks!

[deleted account]

I'd be concerned, but my son was literally speaking in paragraphs at that age. He had an advanced vocabulary, but was lacking in articulation and qualified for services at 3.

It's nothing to freak out over, but certainly worth getting evaluated asap. The earlier things get started... the better.

Liz - posted on 11/23/2011

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Krista E - Just wondering what the exercises are that you are doing to get such fantastic results? Thanks

Amanda - posted on 11/23/2011

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As a parent who listened to everyone saying hes fine, hes a boy, he will catch up with the rest. I say it doesnt hurt to get him check out, because I didnt and I did my son wrong by not listening to my gut. I now have had two children in speech, there is no shame it in, and early internvention is best for a child.

Elfrieda - posted on 11/23/2011

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Wow, I just looked at the link Amanda posted for 24 months (my son is 23 months). 100 words? pronouns? There is no way. He says about 20 words and 10 non-words that mean something "moo", etc. I'm not actually concerned. Well, I'm a little concerned, but not really. He'll talk when he's ready to talk.

Since he's got all the other criteria down, and understands what we mean when we tell him to do something and can communicate with us pretty well, I'm not worried. He's very smart with puzzles, block stacking, learning some of the alphabet, playing with other kids, being gentle(ish) with the cat, and being 'helpful' around the house. If your son seems to be normal or ahead of the pack on most things but just not speaking, I wouldn't worry about it.

Tcordukes - posted on 11/23/2011

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If your concerned talk to your doctor. My son was the same he only started to babble at 18mths then at 2 not to many word. he is now 3 and the improvments he has made in the last 12 mths is amazing i now can not get him to stop talking.

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