As parents we monitor our child’s development and we are the first to notice if something doesn’t feel right. This is part and parcel of being a loving and caring parent which is why it’s only natural that sometimes when our children are born with a condition we can be over vigilant in looking for differences in our child’s development and jumping to the conclusion that it must be because of the condition.
Or because of our inexperience we might think this is just ‘ normal’ for babies born with cleft, which is why it is useful to give some indicators, or Red Flags, that parents can watch out for and then seek further professional advice. You can contact your own GP or your Cleft Team Co-ordinator who can advise you where to go next.
Red Flag Alerts
Hearing – glue ear & intermittent hearing loss
Recurrent glue ear can affect a young baby’s ability to learn to talk. Here are some signs that your baby may have glue ear. It can be hard to tell so if in any doubt go and see your GP or nurse who can check in a few minutes for you.
- Don’t turn their head towards sounds
- Don’t respond when you call their name
- Pull at their ears and are irritable
Speech & Language Development
- If your child does not respond to sounds or someone calling their name
- If your baby is not babbling at all by 11-12 months
- If by 18 months there are no first words developing
- If there are no simple sentences developing by 2 & ½ years old
- If first sounds and words consist mainly of ‘m, n, ng’ sounds, such as ‘no, mama, nana’ rather than ‘baba, dada’.
- If your child sounds very nasal – like they are speaking through their nose.
- If your child has some unusual ‘throaty’ ‘uh’ sounds emerging or uses the sounds ‘k’ or ‘g’ predominantly
- If you have any concerns