Some type of learning disability?

trekarenSeptember 8, 2002

I know there are some mom's of special needs children here.

My friend's son has some idiosyncracies, that left her desiring to learn more, but the pediatrician hasn't been much help so far.

The boy is just turned 2. He is small for his age, and he walked late. The pediatrician didn't seem concerned. He does not speak very many words, but he "KNOWS" a great deal of vocabulary. For example, anything you ask him about, and he can show you what it is. Where is the fan? Where is mommy? Where is the doll? Where is the truck? Literally dozens of words he recognizes and can identify the object they are associated with.

Some words, he tries to speak. Cake becomes "ake", his sister Emily becomes "eee".

"mom" and "dad" and "grampa" come out fine.

Other words, he gets exactly backwards. Like shoe becomes "oosh". And he knows what a shoe is, but he just says "oosh, oosh." Other words come out exactly backwards like this, too.

Playing cars, I said "beep beep!" and he replied, "deet, deet."

He almost reminds me of verbal dyslexia, if there was such a thing. But all the learning disability web sites discuss issues in older children. I was so curious by the word reversing, and wondered if anyone here ever heard of this.


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At 2, it's so hard to "diagnose" an LD problem, that's why the Dr. doesn't seem helpful. Even at 3, most dr's just say "kids develop at different rates". I knew something wasn't right with my son since he was 3, but it took until he was 6 and in Kindergarten to find out what. It is normal for kids to leave of initial sounds of words at 2, or say "d" for "b" - d and b are "paired" sounds, with the mouth in almost the same position.

One thing to tell your friend - don't just settle for the pediatrician's opinion. A speech therapist, occupational therapist, or physical therapist will know A LOT more about LD than most peds. We've found the OT to know the most about my son's condition. LD is not really an "illness" so it's not covered much in most doctor's educations. The therapists specialize in treating kids with various "disorders" so they are the most knowledgeable. If your friend has concerns, she can ask her dr. for a referral to an OT or speech therapist for an evaluation, but once again, it might be better to wait until the child is 3.

I wish them good luck!

    Bookmark   September 9, 2002 at 8:12AM
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I think what you are discribing would be considered more of a developmental delay at this point and not a learning disabilities. A learning disability can not be diagnosed until the school age years, because it discribes a situation in which a child is capable of learning(at a normal IQ level), but not able to learn at the rate expected of the child's age group.

A developmental delay is when a child does not develop at the same rate as typical children. If your friend feels that her child is not acquiring skills as he should, then she can seek out help from an early childhood specialist. Depending on the state, most states have early childhood intervention programs established. Here in Wisconsin, school districts must provide an early childhood screening for children over 3 years of age to try to detect developmental delays as soon as possible. It varies from state to state, but there should be something provided.

I hope this is of some help to you.

    Bookmark   October 1, 2002 at 11:22AM
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I understand the part about developmental delay. What made me say, LD (even though I know thats not what it technically is), was the verbal reversal of words and sounds, in a semi-dyslexic sort of way. I have been out of town, but I plan on suggesting the occupational therapy route for her son.

She just feels that the earlier the intervention and diagnosis of a problem, the better off he would be. Speech 'delays' are not uncommon, and do not, in and of themselves, signal a disability. It's the verbal dyslexia symptom that was so strong and identifiable, that had us perplexed.

    Bookmark   October 1, 2002 at 4:39PM
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But he's still really a baby. My son hardly said ANYTHING at 2, but by 2.5 was a chatterbox. I would wait until the child was 3 before I got all upset.


    Bookmark   October 1, 2002 at 5:37PM
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He is young and it is certainly within normal to not be able to speak well yet, but if he were my child I might go ahead and have his hearing checked particularly if he had any history of ear infections.

    Bookmark   October 4, 2002 at 9:56AM
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we were all really worried about my niece. She didn't talk well until she was about 5. She talked, but you couldn't understand her. When she was about 6 she started talking really well, by her 5th grade year they debated about advancing her a grade because she was doing so well.

Our son didn't really talk until he was about 21/2-3 and then he seemed to start all at once. He is about ready to graduate and on the national honor society. Don't sweat it yet.

    Bookmark   December 12, 2002 at 11:17PM
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Sounds like my daughter. She is my second child. Didn't do much as a baby, just sat there.Couldn't do alternate steps on the stairs until she was about 6 or 7 yrs. old. We couldn't understand what she was saying until she was about 5 yrs. old.Then her 2nd gr. teacher said to test her for ADD. The school district and our doctor tested her and said she was very bright, but did not absorb things she felt were unimportant,such as how to dress herself properly.Your friend's child might not feel it is important to speak correctly.Give it time.My child is now on that new Adderall timed release and is doing great.

    Bookmark   March 20, 2003 at 11:11AM
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As of last month, he is in speech therapy. The doctors said that all signs are of completely normal intelligence. In addition, there is no sign of a speech disorder or learning disorder.

They said that since he was 'understood' by the parents, and they 'knew' what he wanted, he just didn't see a need to learn how to talk properly. He's the 4th of 5 kids, so the parents probably did do a bit of 'giving' without making him articulate what he wanted.

Reminds me of the joke about the parents who had a baby. They loved him and raised him but as he grew, he never talked. The older he got, the more worried they got. Taking him to doctors, etc.

Then one day when he was about 5, his mom gave him toast. He piped up, "Hey, this toast is burnt!"

They turned around in awe, and said they could not believe he was talking! What a miracle!
He said, "It is no miracle. It is just that up until now, everything was ok!"

    Bookmark   April 14, 2003 at 10:01AM
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