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Small child speaking very few words, good hearing ability, born premature. Does he require speech therapy?

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Pediatrician, Infectious Diseases
Practicing since : 2005
Answered : 1528 Questions

My son is 2 years 10 months old and he speaks only very few words. Some of those words are as below; Achan, Amma,Akka, Ammath, Ka ka, Appappam etc.. ( all these words are in our Malayalam language) His earing ability is absolutely perfect. he is enjoying music very well.He had a pre-mature birth and had weight of 1.70 kg at the time of birth.
But now he is 10.5 kg and having 83 cms height.

can you please advise whether he needs any special therapy or his speeching skill will develope automatically by natural growth.
Posted Fri, 4 May 2012 in Child Health
Answered by Dr. Hema Yadav 7 hours later

Thanks for posting the query.

At 2 1/2 yr a child should use atleast 50 words in his vocabulary, should be able to point to known objects like fan, ball or body parts and should understand simple instructions like no, wear your shoe, go to daddy, etc.should speak two word phrases like" cat sits"dog bark".

If he can do so in any language, malayalam or english or any other language he is doing fine.

If he is not speaking but understand s and follows instructions well and has no other milestone delays like in walking, fine motor skills, then he might be a late bloomer who wil cope up by the time he is three year old.

But if he has problem in understanding and expressions also he needs to be evaluated by a speech pathologist and therapist..

Considering that he was premature born baby, there is a risk of late development of speech but
When they develop speech they are as normal as other children.

So I would advise you to consult your childs pediatrician first who can assess his development in general and if needed refer you for more detailed evaluation.

You neednot worry, as I mentioned earlier that only spoken words are not important, understanding and expressions are important part of development and if he is normal in that he will most likely learn to speak soon. Yet his doctor wil be a better person to judge than you or me.

So feel free to discuss it in details with your pediatrician for relieving your doubts.

Hope I have answered your query.

I'll be available for any follow up queries.

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