Q. Can using electronic devices cause delay in speech in small children?

Answered by
Dr. Oliver Roces Chiapco
and medically reviewed by Dr. K Shobana
This is a premium question & answer published on Jan 21, 2021

Hi doctor,

My son is three and a half years old. He just speaks mom and dad. He suffered from RDS at birth and he was on an incubator for four days. Now, he is healthy, active, and naughty. But he is not in a mood to speak other words. We used to give him a tab to watch cartoons when he was two years old. Now, he asks us to provide a tab to watch cartoons. What to do? Can he able to speak, learn words and language?



Welcome to

I understand your concern. A three and a half-year-old child should be able to speak three-word phrases and should know at least a fifty-word vocabulary. He should be able to speak clearly and intelligibly. If he is not doing the above-mentioned activities, then he should have a formal hearing or audiology evaluation and formal speech evaluation. Practice one-on-one reading with the child with age-appropriate books for at least twenty minutes daily. One-on-one reading promotes two-way interaction and enhances learning. TV (television), cartoons, and videos are not recommended in young children.

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