20896457 tn?1592763839

Why does my 2½ year old replace a word she knows with a different word?

Sometimes she will refer to an object that she knows how to say as "bay-be". Usually it's when someone asks her to say a word. For example, if we ask her to say kitty she will say "bay-be".I think she is going to have to be evaluated by a speech/language pathologist. She knows how to say plenty of words, but most of them don't come out clearly. I don't think people outside of our family would understand her. She also only says a few 2-3 word sentences. Although, she does babble all day, like she's trying to speak in sentences, but it's just gibberish.
1 Responses
Sort by: Helpful Oldest Newest
973741 tn?1342342773
Hi there.  This is a great question.  So, she is still really young.  Almost too young for speech evaluation to be telling. We waited until our son was 3.5.  He also garbled his words and left out the middle part of it.  We saw a phd speech pathologist at our city's Children's Hospital and he fell within normal.  Which basically means there is a really wide range of normal for kids under 4.  With that said, my son has something called sensory processing disorder.  Tripping frequently is a sign as is garbled speech.  When you do a speech eval, they check the three areas of speech which are articulation (the ability to understand the words she is saying), expressive language (ability to formulate what to say to others) and receptive language (ability to understand and process what is said to her).  You can have an issue in any one of the three areas or all three but they are separate parts of speech.  The garbled speech can be very normal for a toddler of her age.  But kids ARE supposed to make some progress.  If she is using the wrong word, that can be a sign to eventually have her evaluated.  They actually have a name for mixing up words which is phonological processing disorder.  Not saying she has this because PLENTY of kids exhibit these exact same things and nothing is wrong and they outgrow it.  She's still very young, remember that.  By the way, my son with sensory processing disorder is now a teenager.  He's a straight A student, athlete, plays an instrument in first chair of the school Jr. band, and has a small group of friends.  It's not always been easy but we did occupational therapy and addressed his processing disorder and things greatly improved. So IF there does end up being this or that going on, please don't despair. They can do amazing things for children these days!  Does she exhibit any other issues?  How is her motor development? Does she undersand basic instructions you give her? Is she clumsy at all?  
Helpful - 0
Thank you for your answer. It's good to know there may not be an issue at all. Her language comprehension is normal. She understands what people are telling her, and can follow simple directions. Her motor skills seem to be on track, but she might be a little behind on fine motor skills. She still holds crayons, markers, and chalk in her fist, and it seems like she can't manipulate her fingers to indicate numbers.

As for clumsiness she goes through phases of being more clumsy than usual, but in general I wouldn't say clumsiness is the norm for her.

I've often wondered if she has SPD. Certain loud noises upset or scare her, and she's not a big fan of physical contact, like snuggling, hugging and kissing. She will do those things, but she has to be the one that initiates the contact. If someone else does she seems uncomfortable, and gets all squirmy. Also, if you're sitting next to her, and any part of your body is barely touching hers, it seems to annoy her.
Yes, those can all be symptoms.  I think I'd think along the lines of quirks and extremes.  My son had fight or flight responses to certain things like if his hands got wet in preschool.  (washing hands was a nightmare, not as bad at home, bad at preschool).  How's her eye contact with strangers?  How is she with eating?  
Have an Answer?

You are reading content posted in the Speech & Language Disorders Community

Didn't find the answer you were looking for?
Ask a question
Popular Resources
Fearing autism, many parents aren't vaccinating their kids. Can doctors reverse this dangerous trend?
Yummy eats that will keep your child healthy and happy
What to expect in your growing baby
Is the PS3 the new Prozac … or causing ADHD in your kid?
Autism expert Dr. Richard Graff weighs in on the vaccine-autism media scandal.
Could your home be a haven for toxins that can cause ADHD?