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Does your child need speech and language therapy?

At times, communication between a parent and a child can be very challenging. Especially, if your child knows exactly what they want, but you are not able to understand it. Your child might be frustrated that he/she cannot communicate effectively and the tempers run pretty high. Now, as we know, this is fairly common during the language learning period, but when do you know this beyond the normative?

This is where a Speech therapist can help you figure out if your child really needs speech therapy, or if it’s just a part of growing up. Speech therapists work with both adults and children. A speech therapist will do an evaluation to assess if your child is able to say the words or sentences that she/he should have been able to say at that particular age. Based on this initial evaluation the therapist is able to come to a conclusion as to whether or not your child needs to be enrolled in speech therapy.

Here are some signs to look out for:

  • Your child only makes a few sounds between the ages of 7-12 months.
  • Your child doesn’t communicate or play with others in a social setting even after the age of 18 months
  • You or others have a hard time understanding what your child is saying at the ages of 18 months to 2 years.
  • Your child hasn’t started to combine two or more words to make sentences at the age of two.
  • Your child struggles to make easy sounds or words after the age of 2 1/2.
  • Your child has poor attention or seems restless
  • Your child has poor eye contact and doesn’t point to things

Keep in mind that these are signs to look out for and cannot conclude a diagnosis, so it has to be done by a professional.

Now, let’s say that your child was diagnosed with a language delay. It is critical to enroll the child for speech therapy as soon as possible. This is called early intervention. The reason is pretty simple. As children, the capacity of the brain is the strongest before 7 years of age. The earlier you enroll your child for speech therapy, the better the progress. Think of your child’s brain as a clay which is still wet. It is easier to mold the clay when its wet rather than when its dried up. In the same way, your child’s brain’s plasticity is the highest when younger so it’s crucial to make use of that.

Therefore, it is important to consult a professional early on to have your child assessed and if needed, enrolled in a speech therapy program.

The Speech Therapist at Burjeel Day Surgery Center will help your child encounter Language Difficulties, Articulation, Fluency (Stuttering), Voice Disorders, Hearing Impairments, Autism, Neurological Conditions and Cognitive Disabilities.

Call 056 401 3987/ 800 55 & talk to our Speech Therapists.

Sharel Noronha
Speech Therapist

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