As a parent recognizing difficulties in your baby’s hearing or speech is crucial to proper development.
The following communications milestones were obtained from The Center for Hearing and Speech; a good resource to contact should notice developmental problems with your baby.
Keep in mind that babies develop in unique ways so milestones can vary. That being said the following milestones offer a general guideline of how your baby should be developing.
Pass the Newborn Hearing Screening
Birth – 3 Months
- React immediately to sudden, loud sounds (stop eating for a moment, wake up, cry, jump, blink, stir in sleep)
- Coo or smile when spoken to
- Turn eyes toward interesting sounds
- React to a musical toy
- Respond to his/her own name
- Try to talk back when spoken to
- Look to find new sounds, including quite sounds
- Understand “no” and “bye bye”
- Begin to imitate speech sounds
- Babble (“baba”, “dada”)
- Use gestures (shake his head “no”, wave “bye bye”)
- Follow simple commands
- Say first word such as “uh-oh”, “mama” or “dada”
- Point to or look at familiar objects when asked
- Imitate simple words and sounds
- Enjoy music, nursery rhymes and books
- Answer “yes” and “no” questions
- Say 100-150 words
- Put two words together (“eat cookie”, “dirty hand”)
- Try to sing
- Answer simple “what” and “where” questions
- Follow 2-3 part directions
- Use own name to refer to self
- Use words with 2 or more syllables (“monkey”, “banana”)
- Recite nursery rhymes
- Use pronouns (“you”, “me”, “my”, “he”)
- Imitate 4 word sentences
More Ways To Support Proper Development
Have your child’s hearing tested
Identifying and intervening can ensure that your child develops strong speech, language and listening skills.
Protect your child’s hearing
Prolonged loud sounds can have a permanent impart on your child’s hearing. In many cases this type of hearing loss can be avoided entirely. Test the volume of ear buds before letting the child use them. Turn down the volume if the sound is too loud. Also be sure to have your child wear ear plugs or some other form of protection if they are exposed to loud noises at movie theaters or sports arenas.
Encourage your child’s language
Engaging your child in the following activities that can improve and build strong communication skills.
- Narrate your day
- Follow your child’s lead and name what he/she sees
- Respond with interest to your child’s attempts to talk
- Play games, sing songs and recite nursery rhymes
- Read to your child and talk about the pictures in the book
- Use speech that is clear and simple for your child to understand and use
If you notice problems
Again the following was obtained from The Center For Hearing and Speech. Contact their office at 713.523.3633 to schedule an appointment.
If your child has a doctor simply contacting them for a checkup is another option.
Nick Bryant is a Counselor with 10 years of experience working in community health. He enjoys concerts, mocking Dallas Cowboy fans and creating easy to understand community resources on his site HoustonCaseManagers.com. To become a more saucy social worker, hop on his free email list and receive weekly community resource guides delivered directly to your inbox.