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Why is my child still not talking?

Q: My son is 2 years, six months old. However, he has still not started talking. He hears well and has good communication skills but his vocabulary is limited to a maximum of only 10 words. Is it normal? Do we need to do anything? My wife and I are from different parts of India and hence speak different languages. During the daytime, we are not at home and a maid who speaks another language looks after him. He is going to a play school for the last 5 months but has not learned any rhymes or other things. Also, he has very disturbed sleep at night. After a certain time, he gets up from his sleep and starts crying and rolling all over the bed. Only after constant rocking, will he go back to sleep, but again a very disturbed sleep. This is happening for the last couple of months. He gets very angry at times and pulls the hair of the person carrying him. Please clarify why this is happening?

A:You should consult a Paediatrician, who will advise you about the stages of development. In most metropolitan cities, voluntary organizations like the Spastic Society, also help with the diagnosis and management of children with developmental delay. The fact that the child is exposed to 3 languages is a very important point. He is probably getting to hear so many different ways of talking, that he can be confused. But that still does not explain why he sleeps badly. You must pay more attention to his health, even if it means downsizing the mother’s career. Is the maid competent to look after the child? Is she affectionate, firm and consistent? How does the child spend the time after play school and before the parents return? All of these will have to be reviewed. Please do consult a specialist in person, for more exact advice.


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