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How many words should a 18months say?


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#1 Teah

Posted 21 October 2019 - 11:25 AM

Hi mummies, Should I be concerned?

My 18month old isn't really speaking yet, says a few words, babbles etc and understands everything we say. For example I can tell him to go get his milk from the fridge and he goes or I can say go get a fork from the draw and he goes. He understands everything but won't talk so much. He will say random words when U least expect it but I would say he knows maybe 5-8 words. He has reached all his milestones and I'm not concerned about anything else besides his speech?

My first born DD was having conversations with me by this age ?? They say boys take longer? My nephew was 2 before he started talking so I'm hoping this is all it is?

TIA

#2 Hands Up

Posted 21 October 2019 - 11:46 AM

I was advised 50 words which included animal sounds, truck sounds etc. DS1 had less than ten and required speech therapy as even once his word count increased he couldn’t link words together. Now at five he doesn’t shut up and has an excuse vocabulary. I’m glad we sought intervention but of course some slow starters will get there on their own but if in doubt check it out!

#3 Jenflea

Posted 21 October 2019 - 12:05 PM

At 18 months I'd get it checked but not panic yet.

#4 mayahlb

Posted 21 October 2019 - 12:06 PM

I believe it is anything between 20-50. This can include noises like animal noises and car noises used to convey information. This link gives a good run down on speech milestones. https://kidshealth.o...s/not-talk.html

Babbling is good though. It is a precursor to speech and very important in the development of being able to make sounds. It helps lay the motor planning pathways of speech. Make sure you are giving them the time and opportunity to communicate though. That’s most what our speech therapist at just before 2 did. (Google haven and OWL on YouTube, and it gives some good tips). It was more about teaching us as parents who to provide opportunities and encourage speech then fix anything. And lots of positive reinforcement on any attempt to communicate orally.

#5 Teah

Posted 21 October 2019 - 01:57 PM

I have just written down words he says and so far I have 10 but I think there are a few more. So more then what I initially thought. Plus all the sounds and gestures.

Maya: looks like according to that link his not that far behind. Maybe more in the 12-15month range. But slightly in the 18+ month range also. Could be stressing for nothing.


I guess I'll give it a couple months and if there has been no progress I will ask go.

Anyone else had this but then all of a sudden wouldn't stop talking??

Edited by Teah, 21 October 2019 - 03:26 PM.


#6 22Fruitmincepies

Posted 21 October 2019 - 02:05 PM

DS wasn’t saying much at 17mo and then had a huge gain in language and was easily saying 50 words by 19mo. He’s now 23mo and is saying 3 word sentences. It’s certainly something to keep an eye on, but not something to panic about yet.

DS is certainly behind where my DD was at the same age for language, but he’s way ahead in other areas.

#7 Not Escapin Xmas

Posted 21 October 2019 - 02:43 PM

At 18 months mine said uh-oh, and that was about it. I had her hearing tested (all fine) and then booked her in for speech therapy. At 22 months, I went back to work and she started daycare. She was talking full sentences a few weeks later!!! Little ratbag! I cancelled the speech therapist.

So it could go either way :) I'd book your DS in now, as there's usually quite a wait if you go public (which we did) and then you can cancel it if all is good.

#8 Teah

Posted 21 October 2019 - 03:25 PM

View PostNot Escapin Xmas, on 21 October 2019 - 02:43 PM, said:

At 18 months mine said uh-oh, and that was about it. I had her hearing tested (all fine) and then booked her in for speech therapy. At 22 months, I went back to work and she started daycare. She was talking full sentences a few weeks later!!! Little ratbag! I cancelled the speech therapist.

So it could go either way :) I'd book your DS in now, as there's usually quite a wait if you go public (which we did) and then you can cancel it if all is good.

I'm thinking this is what mine will do also, his just trying to stress me out haha. Thanks for sharing 😃

#9 SeaPrincess

Posted 21 October 2019 - 03:31 PM

I was worried about my second child at about the same age. My eldest had been such a talker at the same age. I was told the aim is 50 consistent vocalisations by 2, and he was assessed as in the normal range. DD was born when he was 19 months old, and he had an explosion of language in the months between then and his 2nd birthday.

#10 Elissa03

Posted 21 October 2019 - 03:33 PM

At 18mo my child health nurse said that about half a dozen words was normal! Quite a difference between that and the 50 that others were told they should have.

My son was a slow starter with language, only about 6 words at 18mo, but just before he turned two he had a huge spurt in language, and ever since has been great.

If you're concerned, have a chat with a speech therapist or your child health nurse about how he's going. If there's no problem then you'll feel better, and if there is an issue you can start early to work on it.

#11 No girls here

Posted 21 October 2019 - 03:40 PM

View PostJenflea, on 21 October 2019 - 12:05 PM, said:

At 18 months I'd get it checked but not panic yet.

This! There are plenty of kids who aren't really talking at 18 months who don't have any issues (my DS3 was one of them). But it is the age you should start checking things out because if there are any issues, it's best to get onto them quickly. With DS3 we booked into get his hearing tested which was a bit of a wait and by the time we got the tests done he was talking a lot more.

#12 rosie28

Posted 21 October 2019 - 03:45 PM

At 18 months our DS had maybe 10 words and we took him to speech therapy. His receptive language was fabulous, and we ended up having a couple of sessions before they told us he would have an “explosion” of language, but to come back if he didn’t have 50 words at 2. By the time he turned 2 we had a list of 300 words he could use and had stopped counting.

Worth having it checked out if you’re worried. At least mention it to your MCHN.

#13 Veritas Vinum Arte

Posted 21 October 2019 - 03:54 PM

Hearing is the first thing to get checked if you are going to get something checked.

Like a PP I had been told 5-10 words at 18m and 20 at 24m.

My first didn’t even hit 20 words for 24m, but at 27m had his explosion of words so by 33m I stopped worrying when he said “Mummy I think perhaps the train may be coming soon”.

My second child had about 30 words at 24m but when he finally started speaking more I realised he sounded like he was talking under water..... ergo fluid filled ears and not hearing correctly. Hearing test showed moderate hearing loss. Grommets and adenoids out just before 3yrs but did not return normal hearing test until 4.5yrs. We have had ongoing articulation problems (clarity) due to his lack of clear hearing as a toddler and preschooler.

My third also had about 5 words at 18m. I was starting to get worried again until at 20m she ripped out with “DS1 name give me ball back”. Overnight she went from nothing much to sentences.

My nephew at 24m we were cheering new consonant sounds as he wasn’t even babbling. Ears checked out fine.once again it was about 27m when everything clicked for him. His siblings have also been on that 24-27m groove.

My family seems to produce late talkers who spend the rest of their lives talking to make up for lost time.

#14 Teah

Posted 21 October 2019 - 04:43 PM

Thank you ladies

After hearing everyone's stories I think it's safe to say this can be normal.

I'm thinking I might just book him in for hearing test anyways, bit curious. If that seems all fine then I'll just see what his like at 2, if not much has changed then I'll look deeper into it.

Thanks everyone 😘

#15 Mooples

Posted 21 October 2019 - 04:50 PM

I was the opposite, ds1 was my first child and I assumed he was normal for not talking much at 18m. Mchn flagged it with me so we had a hearing test and low and behold fluid filled ears, hearing well below expected. Ent and grommets within 2 months of initial mchn appointment. He is 4 now and still in speech therapy catching up. Ds2 is now 19 months and wow his language is amazing in comparison, I feel a bit foolish for not realising ds1 was so far behind. So definitely worth getting checked out.

#16 eigne

Posted 21 October 2019 - 05:34 PM

Mine had 2 real words at 18 months and the nurse wasn’t worried. She’d caught up by 2 years. Remember a ‘word’ includes a random syllable that they consistently use for a specific thing. So saying “doof ah” and meaning “my favourite bunny rabbit” is still a word.

#17 Teah

Posted 21 October 2019 - 05:38 PM

Just a quick question ladies, does the gp check for fluid in ears? Or do they refer you to a specialist?? I know go can check for ear infection and a specialist checks hearing but fluid?

Edited by Teah, 21 October 2019 - 05:42 PM.


#18 mayahlb

Posted 21 October 2019 - 05:50 PM

A GP or pead might be able to tell if there is fluid behind the ear drum. However there is usually a test that uses a puff of air into the drum and measures the curve of the rebound. Depending on your area and how busy they are sometimes it’s better to get an audiologist to check. In saying that our local child health clinic has the basic hearing test equipment including the device mentioned. Mostly because our area only has an audiologist visit every 2-3 months. (I’m currently on the wait list for my youngest because his pead suspects fluid build up behind his drum).

#19 Teah

Posted 21 October 2019 - 06:04 PM

View Postmayahlb, on 21 October 2019 - 05:50 PM, said:

A GP or pead might be able to tell if there is fluid behind the ear drum. However there is usually a test that uses a puff of air into the drum and measures the curve of the rebound. Depending on your area and how busy they are sometimes it’s better to get an audiologist to check. In saying that our local child health clinic has the basic hearing test equipment including the device mentioned. Mostly because our area only has an audiologist visit every 2-3 months. (I’m currently on the wait list for my youngest because his pead suspects fluid build up behind his drum).

Thank you that's a big help

#20 Chaotic Pogo

Posted 22 October 2019 - 12:09 PM

It can be normal but a hearing test is easy and I would definitely get one.  Heading off a possible problem early is way easier than correcting it later.
If the hearing test is ok but he doesn’t make much progress by 20 months, I’d be looking into it further for other possible causes.

#21 Veritas Vinum Arte

Posted 22 October 2019 - 05:30 PM

Hearing test done by audiologist.

Dr had never mentioned fluid filled ears.

#22 countrychic29

Posted 22 October 2019 - 08:02 PM

Can be normal, my first was like that, barely scraped in with 10 words at 18months - even at 2 was just hitting the milestone. But now 6 all is fine

My 3 yr old on the other hand was speaking in complete sentences at 18months - full conversations by 2 and now at 3.5 is in speech therapy for articulation! So go figure ???
Doesn’t hurt to get checked, with our first I already had a referral and specialist appt booked for 2.5 if it didn’t improve so I didn’t have to wait if it got flagged as an issue




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