“EARLY SCREENING MEANS EARLY DETECTION”
Skills such as taking a first step, smiling for the first time, and waving “bye bye” are called developmental milestones.
The development of communication skills begins in Infancy, before the emergence of the first word. Any speech or language problem is likely to have a significant effect on child’s social skills, academic development and behavior. The earlier the child’s speech and language problems are Identified and tested, the less likely it is that problems will persist or get worse. Early speech and language intervention can help children be more successful with reading, writing schoolwork and interpersonal relationships.
Some of the things most children will do at different ages:
Birth to 3 Months
- Reacts to familiar voices or words
- Reacts to loud sounds-baby startles, blinks, stops, sucking, cries or wakes up
- Makes soft sounds when awake, baby gurgles
3 to 6 Months
- Turns eyes or head towards sounds, voices, noise-making toys, dog barking
- Starts to make speech like sounds ‘ga’ ‘ooh’
- Reacts to a change in your tone of voice
6 to 9 Months
- Responds to own name and looks when called
- Understands simple words like ‘no’, ‘bye-bye’, ‘give’.
- Babbles ‘da da da’ ‘ma ma ma’. ‘bababa’
9 to 12 Months
- Responds to both soft and loud sounds
- Repeats single words and imitates animal sounds
- Points to favorite toys or foods when asked
12 to 18 Months
- Uses 10 or more words
- Follows simple spoken directions such as ‘get the ball’
- Points to people, body parts or toys when asked
18 to 24 Months
- Uses 20 or more words
- Combines two or more words such as ‘more juice” “what’s that?”
- Uses many different consonant sounds at beginnings of words: b, g.
- Listens to sample stories and songs
2 to 3 Years
- Uses two to three-word sentences
- Follows two-step instructions, “close the door and get the ball”
Developmental delay is the inability of a child to achieve a developmental milestone at a particular expected age. Developmental delay can be because of biological, genetic, social factors or due to neurological or developmental disorders. For example, preterm children may attain developmental milestones later than their peers.
It is important to identify a child with developmental delay, find the cause and intervene early to attain a good future outcome.
Role of Parents
Parents play a large role in a child’s life, socialization, and development. Parents have an important role in ensuring normal development and identifying the signs of any delay or challenges that the child is facing. This will ensure correct intervention at the right time for the children.