Does your preschooler need speech therapy? - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Does your preschooler need speech therapy?

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GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) -

Speech is an important developmental milestone for toddlers.  Parents often worry if their children are talking enough by age two; what they don't realize is it's actually a two-fold issue.  Professional therapists will tell you it's important to evaluate a child's speech and language. But it can be difficult for the average person to decipher between the two.

Amy Lynch, a speech / language pathologist with the Gulfport School District provided two lists to help parents determine if their child may need to be referred to a professional for help. 

INDICATORS FOR A LANGUAGE REFERRAL FOR CHILDREN 2 ½ - 3 YEARS OF AGE

-The child is nonverbal
-Relies primarily on nonverbal methods of communication such as gestures and grunting
-Has frequent tantrums due to difficulty communicating
-Has not demonstrated an explosion in language (by 2 years, 6 months vocabulary 450 words, by 3 years vocabulary 1000 words)
-Seems disinterested in communicating
-Not interested in having favorite stories read over and over
-Does not label most objects around the house or pictures in favorite books
-Does not ask questions or demand a response from listener
-Does not answer simple what, where, who questions or choice questions
-Is not using 3-4 word sentences
-Not following 2 step directions such as get your cup and put it on the table
-Directions have to be repeated over and over
-Not using any grammar structures such as pronouns or plural endings
-Not making verbal requests to make wants and needs known
-Does not join in singing songs
-Does not direct your attention to what he/she sees or what he/she is doing
-Does not have a verbal means of expressing displeasure or dissatisfaction e.g., no want juice
-Does not use action words
-Does not use descriptive words such as big or little or a color word
-Does not understand location words such as in, on, top, front and back

INDICATORS FOR SPEECH REFFERRAL FOR CHILDREN 2 ½ - 3 YEARS OF AGE

-Does not produce a variety of initial consonants
-Omits initial consonants
-Speaks using only single syllables
-Distorts vowels
-Deletes final consonants
-Is not understood by family or caregivers most of the time 75-100% of the time
-is understood by strangers or adults not seen on a regular basis less than 50-75% of the time
-Correctly produces m, n, p, f, h, and w
-Uses k, g, t, and d sounds
-Phonological processes of voicing such as gup/cup disappears
-Phonological process of final consonant deletion e.g. ca/cat disappears
-Phonological process of stopping  of/ f /e.g., beet or peet/feet and stopping of/ s /e.g. tun/sun disappears
-Does not produce front of the mouth sounds such as s, t, f, sh, ch in the back of the mouth e.g. gun/sun, ku/shoe


If you live in the Gulfport School District and think your preschooler may need to be referred to a speech or language pathologist, here's who you can call for free help.

GULFPORT PRESCHOOL DEPARTMENT:

Anita Apperley, Speech Language Pathologist: 228-865-4678

Jeanne Chandler, Speech Language Pathologist 228-865-4693

Amy Lynch, Speech Language Pathologist 228-254-0313

Summer Morgan, Early Inerventionist 228-865-4699

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