Top Signs Your Child Has A Speech Disorder

Top Signs Your Child Has A Speech Disorder | District Speech & Language Therapy | Washington D.C. & Northern VA

Every parent wants to know their child is developing at an appropriate pace for their age.

Perhaps you’re worried little Bobby isn’t developing at the same rate as his peers, or Suzy is having trouble forming some word sounds her cousin of the same age isn’t having issues with.

If this is the case, childhood early intervention in speech disorders can go a long way to help get results in correcting any issues and correcting speech issues.

Here at District Speech we can provide treatment and interventions to improve your child’s speech and help get them back on track.

Keep reading to learn more about the difference between speech and language disorders, and how we can help.

Symptoms Of A Speech Disorder

When your child isn’t developing speech at the same rate as their peers you might worry they may have a speech disorder.

However, comparisons to other children aren’t always the best measure of this.

Some signs of a speech disorder to watch for include:

  • Nasally-sounding voice
  • Hoarse breathing or “breathy” sounding voice
  • Incorrectly making the sounds for “p”, “b”, “m”, and “h” (common sign in one and two year olds)
  • Incorrectly making the sounds for “k”, “g”, “f”, “t”, “d”, and “n” (in children aged two-three years)
  • Speaking unclearly even to people who are familiar to them (age two-three years)

If your child is in the 2-3-year-old range some other signs to watch for include:

  • Stretching out sounds
  • Pausing often while speaking
  • Repeating first sounds of words
  • Struggling to say words or sounds

Symptoms Of A Language Disorder

Another issue which your child may be experiencing is a language disorder.

The signs of this differ based on the age of the child.

Some of the signs to watch for and what age groups to watch for them for include:

  • Not smiling or interacting with others (age 0-3 months)
  • Not babbling (4-7 month olds)
  • Not using gestures (age 7-12 months)
  • Only making a few sounds (7-12 months)
  • Not seeming to understand other people (7 months to 2 years)
  • Saying only a few words (one year to 18 months)
  • Unable to form sentences (1.5-2 years)
  • Low vocabulary (less than 50 words by 2 years of age)
  • Difficulty interacting with other children (2-3 years)
  • Difficulty with early reading and writing skills (2.5-3 years)

how to identify a speech disorder in your child | District Speech & Language Therapy | Washington D.C. & Northern VA

How Can A Speech Therapist Help?

If you notice any of the above signs in your child, taking them to see a speech therapist may help.

Let’s have a look at some of the reasons why seeing a speech therapist early can be beneficial and what some of the benefits of doing so are.

Why Is Early Intervention So Important?

Sometimes when a parent is concerned their child isn’t developing at the same rate as their peers, those around them may say “oh just wait, they’ll catch-up eventually”.

While it’s true children will not all develop at the same pace, there are certain milestones which if not reached can be a cause for concern.

Children who have language delays and don’t receive treatment to help them catch up are more likely to have difficulties in school with reading and writing.

Furthermore, while some children who develop their speech skills late will eventually catch up with their peers, there is no way of knowing which ones will catch up and who will be left behind.

Let’s have a look at some of the benefits of an intervention.

1. There’s A Chance Your Child Can Eliminate Their Speech Disorder

If a speech issue is identified early, an intervention can help a child to develop the language skills needed to catch-up with their peers.

This could mean remediation for delayed language development, or speech issues and difficulty pronouncing certain sounds.

2. It Decreases Frustration – For Both Your Child And You

When it comes to treating language delays and disorders, parents play a critical role in helping to make this a success, because although your child might spend a few hours per week with a speech therapist, they’ll spend a lot more time with you.

Giving parents the tools they need to work with the child on language development, and teaching them how to use those tools is important to the success of the intervention.

For instance, learning and using strategies such as basic hand signs to aid communication, especially for non-verbal children, can ease frustrations in the short-term while long-term treatments are being worked on.

3. It Can Improve Cognitive Development

The first three years of life are critical for speech and language development in children.

Learning during these critical years affects how the brain develops.

If delays in speech or language are caught early, early detection and intervention can help get development back on track.

Book An Appointment With District Speech

Are you worried your child isn’t developing at the same rate as their peers or cousins of the same age?

Have you ever thought “when their sibling was this age, they were speaking a lot more”?

Did you read the signs of speech or language disorders listed above and recognize them in your child?

If you want an intervention to help your child get back on track, District Speech can help.

Contact us order to set up an appointment with one of our speech therapists, to ensure your child gets the best opportunity to stay on-track in their development.

District Speech and Language Therapy
1300 I St NW, #400E,
Washington, DC 20005


District Speech and Language Therapy specializes in speech therapy, physical therapy, and occupational therapy solutions, for both children and adults, in the Washington D.C and the Arlington Virginia areas.