It might happen that you may not find your child, at twelve months to two years of age, at the same level as their peers in verbal communication. You think it's just a developmental problem they are facing and put off seeking professional advice; an intrinsically wrong step to take, because your child might be suffering from Speech Delay.
Delayed speech, or alalia, can be roughly defined as a delay in the development and use of the biological mechanisms that produce speech.
The symptoms of speech delay are roughly categorized into age related groups, generally beginning at the age of 12 months and continuing through the early adolescence, and they are:
1. Age-12 months
a. It is indeed a symptom if your child cannot point at objects or cannot manage gestures, such as waving good-bye.
b. Another symptom is that if your child does not prefer to communicate verbally as much as his/her peers.
2. Age-15-18 months
a. If your child is unable to pronounce familiar syllables or simply cannot call you even by this time, it's a worrying symptom.
b. You find your child unable to, or simply not reciprocating to 'no', 'hello', 'hi', 'bye'.
c. If your child is unable to extend his/her vocabulary up to 15 words by fifteen months, then it's a symptom.