Early detection of language and speech delays in children

Early detection of language and speech disorders is based on the physiology and development of child. At 1 year of age children usually produce their first words. However, initial lexical growth is slow and has a pace about 1–2 words/week. An author from Stanford University School of Medicine suggests following red flags indicting high risk of language or speech disorder: 6 months- lack of ability to laugh, vocalize, respond to sound, 12 months- inability to point to objects or actions, lack of use of gestures, such as shaking head “no”. At 24 months the red flags would be vocabulary less than 50 words, no two-word combinations, whereas at 36 months- inability to follow simple directions without gestures, no 3 or more word combinations. The America Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends developmental two-step screening to establish whether a non- or pre-symptomatic child is at high or low risk for a language or speech disorder.

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