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Phonogical Disorders and Baby Talk

Updated on March 4, 2015

Baby Talk Begins When They Are Babies

Should you be concerned?

Phonological disorders are often considered ‘cute’ while the child is young, but when we in turn mimic the baby talk of toddler speech, it reinforces through audio and verbal reinforcement the mispronunciation and tends to make it a learned delay which becomes be a source of embarrassment. Ignoring the need for speech intervention after age six most always will affect a child's acceptance by their peers. Interesting studies have been done on bullying on the playground and the targeting of shy children with speech delays --a topic for another day.

All babies begin by talking baby talk. So when should you be concerned? Many speech- language pathologists are coming to the conclusion that toddlers are being diagnosed too hastily. Infant voice boxes are still developing as well as tongue and mouth co-ordination.

The worst thing we can do is talk like they do.

Most early speech delays will automatically correct themselves as toddlers hear correct speech. Verbal stimulation through conversing, singing, playing and reading will go a long way to help the young child develop proper speech.

Be sure to consider hearing problems, oral-motor problems, and even developmental delays when evaluating whether or not your child needs specialized help. Early intervention does pay off.

Auditory bombardment can be a very effective and very enjoyable method of speech intervention. Simple songs, rhymes and stories are part of a child’s everyday play. When you enter in, with your personal touch, learning truly begins. Indeed, most all SLP will admit that the child learns best from the parent.

Encouraging the child to talk during play, even if their diction is not perfect, will pay off in time. The first part of speaking correctly is hearing correctly. Repetition reinforces learning.

You can make up your own words and put them to familiar tunes. You can read books targeting specific sounds. You can make a game while riding in a car. At time, silence can be deafening. Take the opportunity to fill the silence with sound.

Here are a few suggestions for fun interactive books that will delight your child as you do your part to encourage proper speech in your toddler.

Predictable Text Books

Little Pink Pig
Little Pink Pig

Little Pink Pig by Pat Hutchins is a simple, repetitive text story about a barnyard comedy of errors. Ages 3-up.


Do You Have A Suggestion You Would Be Willing To Share?

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    • Internetwriter62 profile image


      7 years ago from Marco Island, Florida

      This is a very valuable insight on the matter of early speech development, while parents consider it cute for their little one to mispronounce words, their willingness to accept and imitate their children could cause that child to develop bad speech habits, what is considered cute at one point could be hurtful later on, I guess it like when parents consider their chubby child cute and they overfeed their child, thus leading to weight problems later on. Parents do need to see the big picture and always try to do what is best for their child's future. Great hub, excellent point.

    • BkCreative profile image


      8 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City

      Yes, please encourage proper language. I am witnessing something truly awful - parents responding to the screaming child - who in turn thinks it's okay and language skills are not developing. Yet the child at 2 or 3 is perfectly capable of speaking but is thinking that yelling is acceptable way to ask for something.

      When I find that someone's child is a whiner/screamer/cryer I know for sure that their language skills are lacking. We have to stop the baby talk - and if they are screaming for something - make them speak and ask for it. Yikes.

      Great hub! Rated up!


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