Speech Delay - Chicago,IL

Updated on March 23, 2013
B.N. asks from Chicago, IL
7 answers

My son has a delay in his speech. He will be turning 4 in a couple of months and has been getting speech therapy since right after his 2 birthday. Has anyone ever heard of allergies affecting speech in a child. Year round he either has a runny nose or is constantly rubbing his nose. His speech has improved dramatically but I wanted to see if there is anything further I should be doing since his speech isn't like a "normal" almost 4 year old.

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answers from Portland on

My grandson has a speech delay and his sister has allergies. I've done lots of research and have never seen that the two can be related.

Has your son not been diagnosed? You should have a diagnosis that tells you why his speech is delayed. If you've not taken him to a specialist, not just a speech therapist, then I suggest you do so.

My grandson has apraxia of speech which means, simply put, that his brain and the muscles in his mouth and face have a disconnect.

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answers from Seattle on

Allergies can be a problem if they affect his hearing. They can cause the pharyngotympanic tube to swell and trap fluid in the ear muffling incoming sound. However, since he has been in speech therapy for so long, I assume that his hearing is checked regularly... if it's been a while you may want it to get rechecked.
Good luck!

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answers from New York on

Allergies can impact speech since their eustation tubes may be blocked and they're not hearing things correctly.

Keep in mind he's only 4. My son had a significant delay and we could hardly understand him at 4 and even at 5 - but it will go away if you keep at the speech therapy. My son is 13 now and you wouldn't be able to discern a difference in his speech from any other 13 yr old boy.

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answers from New London on

Have you brought your son to an ENT?

My daughter had some speech concerns, allergies, auditory processing and sensory integration dysfunction. The specialists (and we went to a few) all agreed that allergies could overlap with these...

With my daughter, I got her off most dairy, genetically engineered foods (Responsibletechnology.com) and greened the house. I took out the wall to wall rug, switched over to the greenest cleaners possible, usd non-toxic/non-scented laundry detergent and her allergies lessened considerably. I used a dry swiffer pad and avoided using the vacuum as much since it stirs up the dust. I was told to open the windows for a few minutes a day since the air outside is less polluted than inside a house (never in pollen season though).



answers from Chicago on

Allergies can definitely affect hearing, especially at such a young age. Even though your son's "hearing" can be tested and found to be fine, this doesn't mean that he's hearing clearly. My son also had delayed speech, but had several ear infections, and we decided to have the ENT put in tubes. We had been told that he hears sounds like he's underwater as a result of the fluid. THAT was a wake-up call.
Kids that have fluid in their ears, whether from a cold, infection or allergies, do not hear as clearly as most of us do. It can definitely affect speech. Normal "hearing" tests won't pick up on clarity; they usually test beeps, not words or speech. Both of my children have good hearing, but have central auditory processing disorder. One of the red flags for this is frequent ear infections when a child is young.
Unfortunately, each child deals with this issue in different ways. My daughter would argue with me that I said something I didn't, whereas my son just started tuning out most of the sounds he deemed unimportant. It's exhausting to put in a lot of effort to hearing and understanding what is said when it's garbled.
Even after we discovered the auditory processing disorder, my kids still needed speech therapy, but they are much better now. If this is true for your son, school will present many challenges, and you (and the school)need to know about them before your son faces them and finds his own way of dealing with them. There's a book that helped me called, When the Brain Can't Hear. It's worth reading. Good luck.



answers from Chicago on

Talk to your doctor about getting him on some allergy medicine like Zyrtec and see if that improves his eyes and nose. Have your doctor check his ears for fluid, wax etc. Does his speech sound like he is talking through his nose? Very nasal? If yes, take him to an ENT for a evaluation and a possible nasal endoscopy to look to see how the muscles are working and to look for a sub mucous cleft palate.



answers from Los Angeles on

I haven't heard of allergies affecting speech. However, if his ears are plugged up along with his nose, then that can definitely affect speech. Have his hearing checked and take it from there.

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