Red Flags for Speech and Language Delays

Red Flags for Speech and Language Delays

Speech and Language Milestones: Red Flags to Watch For

Birth to 4 months

Babies change and grow a lot during their first few months of life. The average newborn gains 5 to 7 ounces a week. They also grow 1/2 inch to 1 inch each month. In short, your baby is getting bigger before your eyes. They are also developing new skills. But if your little one has trouble with any of the following, it could be a sign that something is wrong with their speech or language development:

  • Doesn't respond to loud noises
  • Doesn't babble or try to imitate sounds (by 4 months)

By 7 Months

As your baby continues to grow, so too will their skills. Many 5-, 6-, and 7-month-olds roll, smile, and laugh. They grab toys frequently—and put objects in their mouth—and they babble and squeal. Their world expands each and every day. And while your baby may not have hit all of these milestones, at least not yet, the following could be a sign something is amiss:

  • Shows no affection for the person who cares for him
  • Doesn't laugh or make squealing sounds (by 6 months)

By 1 Year

By your child's first birthday, they've probably changed a lot—physically, mentally, socially, and emotionally. Developmental milestones are things most (75 percent) of children can do by a certain age. But if you have any concerns and/or if your child is exhibiting any of the following behaviors, you may want to speak to a licensed speech therapist:

  • Doesn't say mama or dada—or any other single words
  • Doesn't use gestures, such as shaking head "no"
  • Doesn't point to objects or pictures

By 2 Years

Ah, toddlerhood. There's nothing quite like it. Most 2-year-olds crawl, walk, and talk. They are also balls of energy—running, jumping, and simply going 100 miles a minute. But if your child is struggling physically, socially, or emotionally, you may want to speak to an early intervention-accredited speech therapist. These are some signs that something could be wrong:

  • Doesn't speak at least 15 words
  • Doesn't use two-word sentences
  • Doesn't imitate actions or words
  • Doesn't follow simple instructions

By 3 Years

Can you believe your baby is 3? Thirty-six months have passed since your wee one was born. But if your toddler is having difficulty with any of these things, you may want to speak with their doctor and/or speech therapist:

  • Drools persistently or speaks unclearly
  • Can't communicate in short phrases
  • Doesn't engage in pretend play
  • Doesn't understand simple instructions
  • Shows no interest in other children
  • Makes poor eye contact

If you are concerned about your child's speech and language development, contact us directly here .