2 Year Old Not Talking

Is your 2 year old son still not talking? Does he say a few words and seem like he is lagging behind compared to his peers? You may compare him with his sister who could speak whole sentences at his age, but you postpone seeking professional advice hoping that he will catch up. You believe probably it is normal because some kids are early walkers while some are early talkers. Many parents whose children are slow to speak face this same scenario. Is your 2 year not talking normal? This article outlines all the answers.

Is It Normal for 2 Year Old Not Talking?

It might be abnormal for a 2-year old not to talk because 2-year-old baby should start to pronounce sounds, mimic words and then make up simple sentences. To put it clear, here are the speech development stages that a child experiences around 2 years old. Read and get to know if you baby is catching up.

1. From 12-15 Months

Kids can babble a wide range of speech sounds like b, d, m, n or p, start to mimic sounds and words repeated by family members, and can say one or more words like dada or mama. Nouns always come first. Besides, kids of this stage should understand one-step instructions like "Please give me that ball". Those who watch without reacting to sound may have a hearing loss.

2, From 18-24 Months

Kids learn to talk at different times. At 18 months, toddlers say about 20 words. At 2 years, they can say 50 or more words at 2 years and can make simple sentences with two words like “baby happy”. 2-year-old toddlers can identify common objects, obey two-step commands like "Please pick up the ball and give it to mama", and point to their ears, eyes and nose as directed.

3. From 2-3 Years

After two years, toddlers increase their vocabulary and it becomes too energy-consuming to count the number. They can combine two or more words to form sentences. Toddlers' comprehension improves at 3 years. They understand simple commands like 'put it under the table". They can also identify colors and understand descriptive concepts.

2 Year Old Not Talking, Why?

If your 2 year old is not talking and clearly not following the stages listed above, you should know that your baby may have a delay in speaking. Here are the main reasons for the delay:

1. General Delays in Speech-Language Development

This form of speech delay may be the most common and easy to correct. It means a child learns at a slower pace than his or her peers do. The temporary situation can be corrected through medical and home therapy. Many children improve their speech-language skills after therapy and catch up with peers fast.

2. Difficulties with Expressive Language

Children who experience this delay can think and understand clearly and build normal relationships. However, they have challenges using expressive language compared to basic talking. Their speech development delays as they struggle to communicate effectively. Speech therapy helps such toddlers improve their speech.

3. Issues with Language Problems

This decreases a child's comprehension, where child uses unclear and sparse words and cannot connect directions with words like pointing at an object. Speech therapy is required in such cases combined with intensive clinical help. The treatment may take long to be effective.

4. Autism

Many disorders in the autism spectrum cause developmental problems in children. These include delayed speech and poor communication skills. Affected children exhibit repetitive activity and difficulties sustaining long conversations. Regression may occur after slight improvement even with therapy. Such children require professional evaluation and treatment to get an accurate diagnosis. They require continuous treatment, behavioral modification and intensive language training.

5. Cerebral Palsy

Cerebral palsy leads to significant physical vocal coordination problems. A child with this condition may not control spasms in the tongue. The child may have hearing limitations and often disconnect stimuli from cognitive function. Treatment for this condition includes intensive symbol recognition and speech therapy. The symbol recognition is an alternative to vocal speech. Eventually, children learn to communicate effectively in their condition.

6. Speech Apraxia

Childhood speech apraxia could lead to your 2 year old not talking. This condition affects a child's ability to produce the right sounds that match desired words. The child has an impaired speech that listeners may not comprehend. Children may use gestures to compensate their impaired speech. A variety of treatment are used to correct this condition effectively combined with comprehensive assessment.

7. Dysarthia

This condition's effect on speech depends on whether it is mild or severe. The affected child's speech is disrupted and incomprehensible. Children use gesture to compensate and communicate. The delay improves with speech-language therapy and other treatments.

8. Hearing Loss Before Speech

Speech development in this case delays because children cannot hear words to repeat them correctly. Their speech may be slurred and have the wrong tone or emphasis. Affected children may lose their demonstrative speech with matching gestures. Such children require professional help along with hearing aids and alternate communication training.

9. Hearing Loss After Speech

Some children lose their hearing after learning to speak, which may lead to speech regression. The quality and clarity of speech decreases further as hearing loss continues. The affected child may stop adding new words to his or her vocabulary. The child requires professional help from speech language pathologist or an audiologist. He or she will learn to use sign language, use hearing aids and read lips, which eliminate speech problems. Speech enunciation problems may persist even with therapy.

10. Cognitive or Intellectual Limitations

Children with cognitive limitations require professional treatment after a full evaluation. Professionals may recommend long-term support and training from child development centers, and oversee the progress of treatments.

How to Encourage Your 2 Year Old to Talk

We have learnt that a 2 year old not talking is probably abnormal, so it's vital to find ways to assist children with delayed speech.

1. Spend More Time Communicating With Your Child

Communicating with your child should start at infancy and may include singing, talking, and imitating sounds and gestures.

2. Reading to Your Child

Start reading books to your child as early as 6 months. Look for an age-appropriate book with pictures and encourage your child to look at the pictures as you name them. You may start with classic books or books with textures that your child can touch. Teach your child to point and name pictures on the book. You can then progress to nursery rhymes and later to predictable books like Brown Bear.

3. Utilize Daily Situations

Use your daily activities to help your child improve his or her speech. For instance, name different types of foods, objects, and activities like cleaning or cooking. Ask questions and acknowledge the responses. 

 
 
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