Skip to content

Should I Worry My Baby Is Not Babbling?

When should I worry that my baby is not babbling?

Babbling typically starts around the age of 6 months and continues to develop as your baby grows. By the age of 12 months, babies usually start to produce their first words. If your baby isn’t babbling by 9-12 months, it may be a cause for concern.

Here are some other language milestones to watch for:

  • By 9 months, babies should start to make a variety of sounds, imitate sounds and gestures of others, recognize common words, and respond to simple verbal requests.
  • By 12 months, babies should usually start to say a few words (like “mama” and “dada”), try to imitate words, and understand simple instructions.
  • By 18 months, toddlers often can say several single words, shake their head “no,” and point to show what they want.

However, these are just guidelines, and every child develops at their own pace. If you’re concerned about your baby’s language development or other aspects of their development, you should speak with a healthcare provider. They can do a comprehensive developmental evaluation and, if necessary, refer you to a specialist or a speech-language pathologist for further assessment. It’s important to remember that early intervention can be very helpful if there is a delay, so it’s good to address any concerns sooner rather than later.

What is considered delayed babbling?

Babbling is a critical milestone in a baby’s language development. It typically starts around 6 months of age, and by around 9 months, babies often start to produce strings of sounds, like “bababa” or “dadada”.

Delayed babbling is usually considered when a baby hasn’t started to babble by around 10 months of age. This delay can sometimes be a sign of a language or developmental disorder, but it can also be within the range of normal variation. Some children simply start talking later than others.

If a baby isn’t babbling or making a variety of sounds by 10 to 12 months, it might be a good idea to consult with a healthcare provider for an evaluation. Other signs of a possible language delay at this age might include:

  • Not responding to their name
  • Not making eye contact
  • Not using gestures like pointing or waving bye-bye
  • Not recognizing common words

Remember that these are general guidelines, and each child develops at their own pace. If you have any concerns about your child’s language development, it’s best to discuss them with a healthcare provider. They can provide guidance and, if necessary, refer you to a speech-language pathologist or other specialist for further assessment and intervention if needed.

Why is my baby screeching but not babbling?

Babies make a variety of sounds, and screeching or squealing is part of the spectrum of sounds babies make as they start to explore their vocal cords. While it’s generally a normal part of development, if your baby is screeching frequently and not making other sounds (like cooing, babbling, or other vocalizations), it may be worth discussing with your pediatrician or a pediatric speech-language pathologist.

There could be a variety of reasons why a baby might be screeching more and not babbling as much:

  1. Individual Variation: All babies are different, and some might naturally be more inclined towards certain sounds at first. It could be just a phase your baby is going through as they explore their vocal cords.
  2. Communication: Babies may use screeching or squealing as a way to express themselves before they can use words. They might be excited, frustrated, or trying to get your attention.
  3. Hearing Issues: In some cases, if a baby isn’t starting to babble around the expected time, it could be a sign of a hearing problem.
  4. Developmental Delays: While less common, frequent screeching and limited other sounds could potentially be a sign of a developmental delay.

How do autistic babies babble?

Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) affects people in different ways, and its signs can be very diverse, including in how it may impact language development and babbling. It’s important to note that not all babies who have differences in babbling will end up with a diagnosis of autism.

In terms of babbling, some research has suggested that babies later diagnosed with autism might babble less than their peers, or their babbling might not increase and develop as much over time. They might also have less diversity in their babbling sounds or have unusual pitch, tone, or rhythm in their vocalizations.

However, it’s crucial to understand that babbling is just one aspect of communication and language development, and differences in babbling alone would not typically lead to a diagnosis of autism. Other early signs of autism can include reduced eye contact, lack of social smiles, not responding to their name, limited use of gestures, or not showing interest in social engagement.