If your child has been diagnosed with delayed speech, you may be feeling a range of emotions, from confusion and frustration to guilt and anxiety. You may be unsure of where to turn for help or what to do next.

Don’t worry – you are not alone. This post will provide you with information on what delayed speech is, the possible causes, and how you can help your child.

Delay in Speech Is Not Uncommon

Many parents assume that if their child has not yet started speaking by a certain age, there must be something wrong. This is not always the case. In fact, about 10% of children do not start speaking until after their first birthday, and about 5% do not speak until after their second birthday.

This does not mean that your child has a speech disorder. There are many reasons why a child may have a delay in speech. It could be due to a hearing problem, or it could be that the child is not developmentally ready to speak yet.

If you are concerned about your child’s speech, the best thing to do is talk to your pediatrician. The pediatrician can help you determine whether or not your child’s delay in speech is cause for concern and may refer you to a speech therapist if necessary.

What Are the Causes of Delayed Speech?

While there could be many reasons why a child has delayed speech, here are some of the most common causes:

  1. Hearing problems: A child may not be able to understand language properly if she has a hearing problem.
  2. Poor language skills: If a child is not exposed to language at an early age, she may develop poor language skills.
  3. Developmental delays: A child may struggle with speech because of developmental delays in areas such as movement, thinking and communication.
  4. Autism spectrum disorder: Children with autism spectrum disorder may have difficulty with speech and communication.
  5. Neurological problems: A child’s brain may not be sending the correct signals to her mouth, which can affect her ability to speak clearly.
  6. Genetics: Some children may have delayed speech because it runs in the family.
  7. Poor nutrition: A child’s diet can also play a role in his ability to speak properly. If he isn’t getting the nutrients he needs, it can impact his development, including his ability to speak well.

How Can I Help My Child at Home?

There are a few things you can do to help your child at home. The most important thing is to be patient and supportive. Try to create a relaxed and positive environment where your child feels comfortable speaking.

You can also try some of the following tips:

– Repeat what your child says to ensure you understand them.

– Don’t interrupt your child or finish their sentences for them.

– Use simple, concrete language when speaking to your child.

– Make time for conversation – even if it’s just 5 minutes a day.

– Encourage your child to use words whenever possible, even if they’re not perfect.

Should I Seek Professional Help?

If your child’s speech development is significantly delayed, or if your child is not progressing at the rate that is considered normal, it’s best to seek professional help. This can be done by either visiting a speech therapist or a pediatrician who specializes in speech development.

If you’re not sure whether or not your child’s speech development is on track, there are a few things you can do to test it. One is to keep track of your child’s vocabulary growth by counting the number of words he or she can say. Another is to observe whether your child is using gestures and sounds to communicate.

Seeking professional help sooner rather than later can help improve your child’s speech development and prevent any further delays.

How Does Speech Therapy Help?

Speech therapy is a form of treatment that helps children with delayed speech. It can help with a variety of issues, such as articulation, fluency, voice, and resonance.

The goal of speech therapy is to help children communicate as effectively as possible. This can be done through a variety of methods, such as exercises, games, and activities.

If you’re concerned about your child’s speech development, it’s important to seek help from a professional. Speech therapy can make a huge difference in the life of a child who is struggling to speak.

Tips for Success

Here are a few tips to help you and your child when it comes to speech delay:

  1. Don’t hesitate to ask for help. There’s no shame in admitting that you need help and there are plenty of professionals who can offer guidance and assistance.
  2. Stay positive. It’s important to keep a positive attitude, even when things get tough. This will help your child feel supported and motivated.
  3. Be patient. Remember that every child develops at their own pace and with their own unique timeline. Don’t compare your child to others – focus on their strengths and work towards helping them overcome their weaknesses.
  4. Make time for communication. Make sure you set aside time each day for communication – even if it’s just 10-15 minutes. This will help strengthen the bond between you and your child, as well as helping with speech development.
  5. Use games and activities to encourage communication. There are plenty of fun games and activities you can do with your child to encourage communication. Try singing songs, reading stories, or playing simple games like peek-a-boo to get started!


There can be a lot of reasons why a child may have delayed speech. If you’re worried about your child’s development, the best thing to do is to talk to your pediatrician. They can help you figure out what may be causing the delay and how to best help your child. There are many different treatments and therapies for speech delays, so don’t hesitate to get started on finding the best solution for your child.

Do you have experiences with delayed speech in your child? Kindly leave a comment below.


Lots of Love,

Dr. Ruguru Kimani.