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Speech and Language Development - When To Call a Doctor

Call your doctor any time you or another caregiver has concerns about your child's speech and language development. Be aware of red flags that point to a possible developmental delay, such as when your child does not make sounds that are expected for his or her age.

Your doctor will conduct a physical exam and ask questions about your child's medical history. This information can help your doctor identify developmental patterns and assess whether any other conditions, such as hearing loss, are interfering with development.

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Your doctor may also recommend other tests to:

  • Rule out other conditions. For example, hearing tests done by an audiologist may be recommended to rule out hearing loss.
  • Assess speech and language developmental progress. Questionnaires and evaluations by a speech-language pathologist can help define where your child's abilities are in relation to other children of the same age.
  • Find out whether other problems, such as behavioral difficulties or developmental delays in other areas, are also occurring.

Who to see

The following health professionals can diagnose speech and language problems and may work with other health professionals to treat them:

Other professionals may be involved in the care of children with speech and language delays:

    This information is produced and provided by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). The information in this topic may have changed since it was written. For the most current information, contact the National Cancer Institute via the Internet web site at http:// cancer .gov or call 1-800-4-CANCER.

    WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

    Last Updated: December 21, 2012
    This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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