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Childhood Enrichment Therapy, Inc, on Speech Disorders

Q: How many words should my 2-year-old be able to say?

A: Although every child grows and develops at his/her own pace, most 2 year-olds can speak 50 or more words, ask one to two word questions (i.e. “more milk?”), use simple phrases (i.e. “shoes on”) and be understood at least half the time by parents and other primary caregivers. Between the ages of 2 and 3, most children can speak in two- and three-word phrases/sentences, use at least 200 words, and can be understood most of the time by family or close friends. If your child is struggling in any of these areas of speech/language development, consult your pediatrician and discuss an early intervention evaluation. Speech delay can be an early sign of other developmental issues, so it’s best to be proactive and seek an evaluation as soon as possible.

Q: My child is 15 months old and has not started walking yet. Should I be concerned?

A: While some babies begin walking before 12 months of age, others don’t walk until 16-17 months. If your baby is still not walking by the age of 18 months, talk to your doctor about an early intervention physical therapy evaluation. In the meantime, you can encourage your baby to walk by facilitating cruising along furniture, incorporating a push toy into playtime routines and eliminating stationary play (i.e. exersaucer, walker, etc.).

Q: My 2.5-year-old was recently diagnosed with autism. He struggles with family outings, crowds and loud noises bother him tremendously. What can I do to help him?

A: Most typically developing children have sensory sensitivities, but they often outgrow them. When children with ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder) are oversensitive or overreactive to sensory experiences, it’s called hypersensitivity. Often children with ASD have various sensory processing challenges, so it’s always best to discuss an early intervention occupational therapy evaluation with your pediatrician. An OT can complete a Sensory Profile with you and provide you with therapy tips that you can incorporate into your daily routines to help make outings more comfortable for your child.

Brianne Reyes, MOT, OTR/L
Childhood Enrichment Therapy Inc,
Providing child and family support services in Greensburg, PA and surrounding areas

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