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Speech in 5 yo

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When is is time to get some help with speech therapy? DD is almost 5.5 and still pronounces some words very differently.


She has trouble mostly with S blends. "switch" is "fwitch" "swim" is 'fwim"

She frequently leaves the -s off altogether. "stem" "stamp", etc are pronounced "tem" "tamp"


As cute as it is to hear "Peed up, peed up" while we are in the car :) I want to make sure she gets help when/if she needs it.


She was a late talker so I don't know if that has any bearing on when we should seek help.



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I would definately get an eval. I don't know how your school district/state works, but in many you can get free speech evals and services for your daughter. You can also do it privately but it will be expensive. Worth it though. I didn't even know where to begin to help my ds who has extensive speech articulation errors. Good luck, and I pray that God will guide your decisions.


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I'm getting a little rusty on my Speech Therapy skills, but I think they may Start coming in around this age or a little later. Does your DD have a good S sound in any other contexts (end of words: /pass, past/, beginning of simple words /sun/)? If she does, I wouldn't worry too soon about it. You could wait another 3 months & see if she is developing it further. You could also see if you could stimulate it yourself by having her make an S sound by itself & slowly add it to the rest of the word.

(ie SSS tamp, SS tamp, SStamp.) Working together on it at home may be all she needs to become aware of her error.


Listen closely though to her conversational S sounds & see if they are really correct. You may think they sound okay only to discover when you really pay attention to them they are not quite right. If all her S sounds are lacking in some way you may want to seek help. Are there any other sounds that are mispronounced? Do other people have a very hard time understanding her? I just find that sometimes parents don't always pick up on all the articulation problems a child is having because they are so used to how a their child speaks and they don't notice everything. If you notice any other problem sounds you may want to seek some help.



Jacqui, former speech therapist

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Thanks for the input.


I notice that when she says words with -s in them, she can say it mostly okay. Like the word "just" But her -s has a sort of "szh" sound like she has her tongue on the roof of her mouth when she says it.


I did ask her to say sssss-tand today when she said "tand" and she can do it, so I don't know why she leaves it off.


I completely forgot to mention her other mispronunciations. She has trouble with -art words. smawrt instead of smart and "floor" is said like, "floawr" Does that make sense?

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