I'm not sure where to begin, really. I guess I'll start with our concerns and jump around a bit. At Little Man's 18 month well visit, his pediatrician brought up words. As he was around 40 or so, I thought all was well. Dude thought he should be talking more. And his pediatrician said that if he hadn't improved or started using 2 words together by 21 months to schedule an appointment.
To backtrack a bit, at 15 months, Little Man was ahead of things with 38 words (though that was pushing it a bit) and making himself understood. Then he started walking and it's like the words went away. He didn't really gain more and I think I wasn't worried because I knew a lot of kids who didn't really talk until age 2. Not me. I was speaking well by 9 months and in sentences by 12 months. I still am a chatterbox.
Soooo... 21 months and no 2 word phrases. And I see what Dude has been worried about. The extreme tantrums. Not talking. Not participating in circle time at The Little Gym. Especially the not talking. So I called his doctor and was told to schedule a hearing and speech evaluation. Several places were given and I made calls. None took our health insurance. But, finally, a woman at a place that was recommended suggested I call Early Intervention as it could be covered for free.
I called EI in late June. Did my phone interview and Little Man was deemed eligible for an evaluation. They came on July 13, 1 day before he was 23 months old. He was in a fussy mood that day and ended up qualifying for services. The areas that he qualified were in speech and language, social and emotional development and cognitive abilities. They also recommended he see a developmental pediatrician for a more in-depth evaluation. That's scheduled for November and he'll be 27 months old.
Little Man started developmental intervention (DI) in mid-August and speech therapy a week later. In the last 3 weeks, we've seen an amazing change in him. Not that he's anywhere near where he should be but he's saying MUCH more and is having fewer tantrums. Plus the ones he has are less intense.
I'll be updating this page with information, links and updates. But I wanted to get this up for now.
Posted September 10, 2011
EDITED January 24, 2012
Here we are, six months after Little Man's journey began. I'm trying to figure out how to update a bit and I'm going to keep it a bit short at first.
Speech Delay — he's now considered to be at a 24 month level (he's 29 months) and he is pretty consistent with 2 word sentences, scattering to 3 or 4. Speech Therapy continues 1x per week.
Gross Motor Delay/Sensory Issues — as he was evaluated by the developmental pediatrician and his EI team, we determined that he has some sensory issues (freaks out with food on his hands) and gross motor delays as well (cannot jump or walk up stairs). Occupational Therapy has been added weekly and Physical Therapy every other week. These therapies will also cover some food issues and self care.
EDITED August 17, 2012
I have to update again and will re-edit in a few days. But I'm pleased to report that Little Man is developmentally caught up in most areas. With the exception of Adaptive (self-care) and Gross Motor, he is at or above age level in all areas—including speech. And all past concerns about Autism are long gone. He does have some sensory issues, but I am hopeful they will resolve as he matures.