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If you suspect that your child is having trouble with hearing, language acquisition, or speech clarity, call your child's doctor. A hearing test may be one of the first steps in determining if your child has a hearing problem. Two years of age is not too young for a referral for a speech/language evaluation, particularly if your child is not following directions or answering "yes" or "no" to simple questions.
Other "red flags" that may indicate your child has a hearing problem are:
1. Hearing difficulties
2. Problems following directions
3. Poor vocabulary acquisition
4. Speech dysfluencies (difficulty initiating or sustaining sounds)
5. Delayed acquisition of phrasing skills
6. Unclear speech
A speech-language pathologist is an expert who evaluates and treats speech and language disorders. They may recommend direct therapy or a referral to a developmental pediatrician.
Problems - such as stuttering - may be a developmental process that some children will outgrow. For others, more intensive therapy may be needed. Medical professionals, such as speech pathologists, therapists, or your child's doctor, can help your child overcome these communication problems. Help your child relate to books by selecting stories that mirror families like yours or people from your cultural or ethnic group.
Keep books, magazines, and other reading material where your child is able to reach them without help. Help your child create his own "This Is Me" or "This Is Our Family" album with photographs or mementos. Talk with your child about books or TV programs and videos that you watch together.