Delayed Speech

Well at 34mths old, both DH & I had hoped for more words & sentences from our eldest little girl but it is mostly babble & gestures she communicates with.  Our concerns took us to our health visitor who in turn referred us to speech & language therapy (SALT) along with paediatrics.

Well I was highly naive over what this would entail.  We have attended two speech sessions & they feel she has made progress with more attempts at babble & a greater variety in sounds (fantastic I thought) & I have also learned some sign language to try & encourage her to communicate.

Paediatrics is where my naivity really hit home, I thought they would simply assess her behaviour & tell me what to correct/improve to help develop her speech, boy was I in for a surprise.  We looked in depth at my pregnancy with her, what happened at her birth & are now on waiting lists for several assessments to determine why her speech might be delayed - hearing tests (ok I had discussed possibilities of glue ear so this I was slightly prepared for), blood tests (checking for chromosome/inherited disorders hadn't ever crossed my mind), group play assessments (watching her interaction/looking for signs of autism) & nursery referrals.

Well to say DH & I have been overwhelmed at the number of visits/appointments we are now having is an understatement, I can feel myself close to tears & visibly see DH stressing out more often of late.  Whilst we know at heart it is in our DDs better interests we had never expected such a high level response & I now find myself taking the reins solo on an increasing basis (time to reaquaint myself with the rest of the family).  Our calender is getting full with DD1 getting appointments through on near weekly basis at present (Has been extra fun trying to fit in DD2s health review & booster jabs).

I hope everyone else here is ok & that if you're also having to seek help from the NHS you're better prepared than I was.


  • I know how you feel. You may remember that we always have had issues with oskars eating and growth problems along with delayed speech. We have seen paediatricians And speech apps. Recently we went back to see the Ent specialists as he still has problems with swallowing and food coming out of his nose. We have finally been told that he has got to have his tonsils removed urgently as they are blocking his throat due to them being so large. Ten when he has recovered from that he needs work done on his palate as it is too weak and doesn't close off the passage when he swallows so his food comes out his nose. I agree that appointments can feel overwhelming with all of the different people you have to see. It does settle down after a while as they sort out a suitable outcome. Good luck with all of the appointments hope they are not too stressful
  • We have just come out the other end of all that with Ds1 who is just 5yrs. At 15m he made no sounds except crying so i called in Hv. He had hearing tested and came back perfect! At 2yrs we started like you with all the appointments and play schemes. It was so hard fitting it in with Ds2 who was a baby and when i went back to work. I can sympathise with you. It does get easier. Ds1 is now at school and had been assessed for aspergers. He had come back undiagnosed for now but everyone agrees there is something. His speech is fab now too! It felt at times lime i was jumping through hoops and seeing no change. But neatly 3 yrs on i am so glad we did. It really benefited Ds1 in the long run. Keep going hun. Hugs Xxx
  • Thanks for your replies ladies, it helps knowing others have similar experiences & that it does do good long term.  Starting to feel things settling into a rhythm now, her hearing is fine, bloods/urine currently being checked, their looking to see whether she may have inherited Aspergers & Hypermobility from me and/or diabetes from her dad's side of family (all good fun).

    Coincidentally Alf-n-OsksMum problems with swallowing can relate to Hypermobility, I have always struggled (been slower eating/chewing/swallowing) even to date & my sister also struggled (though unlike me she had her tonsils removed which did help her).

    Thanks once again for the moral support, best wishes.

  • Hi I am glad things aresettling down for you. My oldest son had delayed speech as well but for different reasons. We got to 2 and he didn't speak a word and had never babbled or made baby sounds at all. He saw a lot of people. He is now 5 and is very adult in his speech. He took until he was 5 to catch up with his sounds but you can't tell at all now. The paed says he has aspergers as he has other social issues despite being far ahead with learning. He is also waiting for hisfinal assessment on an 18 month waiting list. It is all fun and games being a parent! My youngest is 17 months and is not taking after her brothers in the speech department which makes a change. It goes to show how different each sibling can be!

    Hope you get some answers soon.
  • Your son sounds exactly like my son, he was 5 2w ago and has just been discharged from speech th! He speaks like an adult too and struggles to communicate with his peers. Ds2 has learnt to talk normally! Yet to see what Ds3 does!
  • I had my own language till I was three and I turned out fine. Everyone tried to stick a label on for after that, but my parents wouldn't let them. I'm completely normal, nothing wrong other than maybe infertility. I am also a special Ed teacher and a lot of children i have taught were clearly misdiagnosed by well meaning, but impatient doctors. As a result they have lower class levels etc, because they'd always been told oh you have xyz. Of course many children and adults are NOT misdiagnosed, and aren't diagnosed soon enough to have a good impact with educational plans created for themAlso I guess what I am saying is if you agree w the drs that this makes sense, or not that will tell you when to look for a second opinion. Specifically autism. a lot of docs are 'trigger happy' with that as a diagnosis. When really it's just a bit of a learning delay, or a super hyper kid, or a shy kid. 

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