Language Disorders

Language is made up of the words we use to share ideas and get what we want. Language includes speaking (expressive), understanding (receptive), reading, and writing. A child with a language disorder may have trouble with one or more of these skills.

Signs of language problems include:

Birth–3 months Not smiling or playing with others
4–7 months  Not babbling 
7–12 months  Making only a few sounds. Not using gestures, like waving or pointing. 
7 months–2 years  Not understanding what others say 
12–18 months  Saying only a few words 
1½–2 years  Not putting two words together 
2 years Saying fewer than 50 words
2–3 years Having trouble playing and talking with other children
2½–3 years Having problems with early reading and writing. For example, your child may not like to draw or look at books.

You can help your child learn language by

  • Talking, reading, and playing with your child.
  • Listening and responding to what your child says.
  • Talking with your child in the language that you are most comfortable using.
  • Teaching your child to speak another language, if you speak one.
  • Talking about what you do and what your child does during the day.
  • Using a lot of different words with your child.
  • Using longer sentences, as your child gets older.
  • Having your child play with other children.