Saturday, March 14, 2015

Why Speech Therapy

I shared yesterday that my son needs speech therapy.  Not being able to form sentences by his age is not necessarily a red flag, but if you suspect your child is behind, I suggest seeking an evaluation.

My son started gurgling and giggling early. I thought he would be an early talker. All my mother's children were talking in simple sentences by 13 months.  I am a chatterbox. Seriously, I never shut up. I figured if any child is going to learn language and to talk, its going to be mine. I also read insistently. My son had a pretty well stocked bookcase before he was even thought of. I have been buying books for children since I was a teenager.

We read everyday. Some days its just one book, but some days it is several. We read everything from Mother Goose to the Bible. My mother has read him Thurber and medical journals. Sandra Boynton is  a favorite author. I also sing. Given my tin ear that may be more of a hinderance to his learning to talk.

Words came slow, but they came. There were the standards Mom and Dad. We also got some hi, hello, hey,  cat, oink, dog. He would point at the dog and say cat. To be fair, I have a really small dog. he would say "Yeah!" and then start clapping. He would say "gain, gain" for again, again. It was delightful watching him learn language.

Last summer he also started saying "juice". I was just waiting for the simple sentences to begin. Then, he got an ear infection followed by a virus and was sick for almost two months.  All the words stopped. All of the words.

I missed his little voice. He didn't even babble anymore. One of his favorite things to do in the car was to say "Mom!" then wait for me to say "Hi", then he would call out "Dad!" and wait for my husband to reply. No more. 

There was not even any babbling. It was silence except for giggling.

Then the babbling started back up. It was slow, but he started saying "dddddDADDY!!!" and "MMMummaaa".  I was so happy. But that is where it stopped. 

He hums now and babbles. Sometimes he will babble sing. But that is it.

He still gets read to and sung to. I narrate the whole day hoping for something to stick. 

I am concerned now that he is 22 months. He had a regression and never came back from it. The neurologist is hoping before our six month follow up, now five months away, there will be sentences.

I have booked an appointment with a speech therapist. Hopefully they will be coming out here soon. I know we will also have to have a hearing test with an audiologist to check for hearing damage.

I will be writing more about this as developments happen. Thank you for letting me share.