Have you noticed signs that your child hasn’t been progressing the way you expect?
Or has your pediatrician recommended you take your baby or toddler to a speech therapist?
If so, the sooner the better.
While speech and language therapy can help folks at any point in their lives, the earlier you seek treatment, the better results tend to be.
Here at Sol Speech & Language Therapy, we offer early intervention speech therapy treatments to help babies and young children overcome their speech and language disorders effectively.
Early intervention speech therapy is mandated by federal law in all 50 states, including here in Texas.
Signs Your Child Needs Early Intervention Speech Therapy
Every child grows at their own rate. If your child is a week or two behind your friend’s child in saying their first word, it’s not typically cause for concern. However, there are some signs you can look for.
If your baby is showing any of the following signs, it could indicate that they have a speech or language disorder:
Birth To One Year Old
- Doesn’t smile
- Doesn’t interact with you or others
- Doesn’t make eye contact – early sign of needing autism spectrum disorder speech therapy
- Doesn’t make many sounds or gestures (like pointing)
- Doesn’t respond to what you say
- Doesn’t look at pictures in a story book you read to them
One To Two Years Old
- Doesn’t respond to what you say
- Doesn’t seem to understand what you say
- Doesn’t speak at all, or uses only a few limited words
- Uses words that are distorted or difficult to understand
- Pronounces the letters B, H, M, P, and W incorrectly – early sign of needing speech sound disorder therapy
Two To Three Years Old
- Doesn’t speak in sentences
- Has trouble playing with other children
- Has trouble talking with other children
- Has trouble understanding how books work (eg. they have a front and back, you turn a page to get to the next part, they have pictures that accompany the story, etc)
- Pronounces the letters D, F, G, K, N, and T incorrectly
- Repeats the first sound of a word – early sign of needing stuttering disorder speech therapy
Why Is Early Intervention So Important?
You may be surprised to know that children develop most of their speech, language, and communication skills in the first three years of their life. So if you suspect your child has a speech or language disorder, it makes sense to address it from a young age. That way, you can avoid their developing bad habits.
But beyond that, the way your child learns their speech and language skills can actually affect how their brain develops. As a result, early intervention can have greater results than speech therapy interventions for adults, or even for school age children.
The “wait and see” approach only works with expressive delays, and only sometimes. An expressive delay is a delay in developing speech with no other developmental disability attached to it. And studies show that about 75% of children with an expressive delay will grow out of it. While that may sound promising, that leaves 25% of children who would have benefitted from early intervention speech therapy.
Book a consultation today to find out how.
What Can Early Intervention Speech Therapy Help With?
Broadly speaking, any speech or language disorder will benefit from early intervention speech therapy. However, it’s particularly effective in treating those with:
- Cerebral palsy
- Delayed speech development
- Speech sound disorders (including childhood apraxia of speech)
As well as speech & language disorders related to:
- Autism spectrum disorder
- Childhood abuse
- Down syndrome
- Fetal alcohol syndrome
- Hearing loss
How To Get Early Intervention Speech Therapy For Your Child?
The federal government has mandated that all states provide early intervention speech therapy programs to make sure children with disabilities get the strongest start in life.
In order to qualify for the program, your child must meet one of the following three criteria:
Having A Medically Diagnosed Condition
Here’s the full list of medically diagnosed conditions.
They include more than just speech and language disorders as well, so if your child has other medically diagnosed conditions the state’s early intervention services can help.
Having A Visual Or Auditory Impairment
If your child has been evaluated and has been shown to have a visual or auditory impairment, Sol Speech & Language Therapy can help.
Having A Developmental Delay
If your child is delayed in developing from a social, emotional, communication, cognitive, or motor function perspective, they qualify for early intervention speech therapy treatments.
How Does Early Intervention Speech Therapy Work?
Once your child has been evaluated, your speech therapist will take a different approach depending on their findings.
In particular, they may use the following protocols, among others:
Early Intervention Coaching
Early intervention coaching shifts the focus from your child to you. It helps empower you and your child’s other primary caregivers with the strategies and tools you need to help your child.
During this process, your pediatric speech therapist will work with you to put together a plan to help your child. They will take your own learning style into consideration as well as your child’s needs. You’ll continue to provide your speech therapist with feedback on your child’s progress, and they will change your plan to match it.
The goal is to help you, as your child’s primary caregiver, to be able to give your child what they need.
Routines Based Interventions
Everybody has a daily routine – even babies and toddlers. Routines based interventions explore your child’s daily routine to find places to encourage behavioral changes and suggestions. This helps you recognize your child’s behaviors that may cause issues and replace them with new, healthier ones.
Book Your Appointment With Sol Speech & Language Therapy Today
If you suspect your child has a speech or language disorder, don’t delay.
The sooner your child sees a speech therapist, the better their results are likely to be.
Book your appointment with Sol Speech &Language Therapy Today.
Contact us today to find out how.