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Doctor insights on: Speech Delay Mistaken For Autism

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Is speech delay a definite sign of autism?

Is speech delay a definite sign of autism?

No.: In fact, nonverbal communication is deficient in autistic children; many children with speech delay are so good at reading nonverbal cues that they have no motivation to start speaking. ...Read more

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Dr. Johanna Fricke
623 doctors shared insights

Autism (Definition)

Autism is a neurodevelopmental disorder affecting three areas: abnormal socialization, communication, and restricted interests with repetitive patterns of behavior. It is usually detected in the first two years of life. Cause is unknown but strong evidence points to an interplay between genetic and environmental factors. Patients with autism may display significant delays in certain developmental areas while having normal or superior strengths in other developmental or learning domains. The severity of the disorder is highly variable ...Read more


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Does a severe speech delay always indicate autism?

Does a severe speech delay always indicate autism?

Definitely not: There are plenty of reasons why a child might have speech delay. Autism is only 1 of them. Has the hearing been checked? Are there other delays in motor or social realms? Likely your child would benefit from a speech and language evaluation at a speech center specialized in children and potentially an ENT evaluation and other workup eg. Developmental evaluation if other delays are present. ...Read more

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Hi. My son was diagnosed with a severe speech delay and a processing disorder and could possibly have a mild case of autism. Does this mean he is on t?

Hi. My son was diagnosed with a severe speech delay and a processing disorder and could possibly have a mild case of autism. Does this mean he is on t?

Autism Spectrum: Disorder(asd): yes, possibly. Impairment in 2 major domains: 1. Deficit in social communication ; interaction; 2. Restricted, repetitive pattern of behavior, interests ; activities. Management: individualized acc. To age ; specific needs. Multidisciplinary approach to improve social functioning, communication ; adaptive skills; promote academic functioning/cognition ; reduce negative behavior. ...Read more

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9 month boy doesn't babble consonants, only vowels and gurling sounds like "aga " should I worry of speech delay or autism? All other dev are fine

9 month boy doesn't babble consonants, only vowels and gurling sounds like "aga " should I worry of speech delay or autism? All other dev are fine

Isolated speech: If this is the only issue, you have time to monitor and enhance this delay in speech/language. Work with your pediatrician. Likely you are seeing: he understands that objects continue to exist, even when they are not seen; responds to simple commands; responds to name; understands the meaning of no; imitates speech sounds; plays pat-a-cake or peek-a-boo; waves bye. Stimulate vocab by "see ; say". ...Read more

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My son is almost 2 and only speaks 20 words, also doesn't say two word sentences yet. Will his doc test for autism or speech delay at his 2 yr appt?

My son is almost 2 and only speaks 20 words, also doesn't say two word sentences yet. Will his doc test for autism or speech delay at his 2 yr appt?

Screening is key: There are screens and questionnaires utilized by doctors during health checks, which help to detect delays in development, including speech. If there is concern, further evaluation will likely be recommended in those cases. ...Read more

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14 month old doesn't point or show toys. Are these major autism red flags?No speech delay based on eval. Plays in turn taking social games, imitates.

Prob Ok, but watch: These do not sound like major red flags, since the language and play seem fine. There are screening tools such as MChat and CARS, that can also screen. Does he interacts well with others, make good eye contact? Eat well? Sleep well? Have normal bowel movements? ...Read more

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Speech delay or autism? 3 y/o- says few words but no sentences. knows letters n sounds, helps with clothes/shoes, etc. no mom, dad, hungry, eat, etc.

Speech delay=sure: Whether this is part of autism or a speech/language issue can only be determined by a full evaluation.If you are in the US, there is a program called Child Find operated in all public school districts.Their job is to take any kid 3 and over and identify their special needs and try to make the kid school ready by 6.Contact special services in the area you live and get started. ...Read more

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2.5 yr boy says 7 words. Has said 100.Rec. Lang. Is fine. history fam speech delay. Had glue ear. Autism r/o. Genetic test fine.Therapy didn't help. Worry?

2.5 yr boy says 7 words. Has said 100.Rec. Lang. Is fine. history fam speech delay. Had glue ear. Autism r/o. Genetic test fine.Therapy didn't help. Worry?

Hearing?: Glue ear is generally diagnosed at surgery for tubes. Did he have tubes placed? Has he had a hearing test? I would ensure hearing is normal before focusing on the speech delay. If that is okay i would be sure to get another opinion of a pediatric speech therapist and potentially a pediatric ENT doctor. Also make sure his siblings aren't "talking for him". ...Read more

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Dr. Johanna Fricke
516 doctors shared insights

Autism Spectrum Disorder (Definition)

Autism spectrum disorder, also called pervasive developmental disorder (PDD), is a type of condition that includes life-long impairment in the ability to communicate and to have normal social interactions. These include ...Read more