Children reach developmental milestones at their own pace. Minor, temporary delays are usually no cause for alarm, but an ongoing delay or multiple delays in reaching milestones can be a sign there may be challenges later in life.
Delay in reaching language, thinking, and motor skills milestones is called developmental delay.
Developmental delay may be caused by a variety of factors, including heredity, problems with pregnancy, and premature birth. The cause isn’t always known.
If you suspect your child has developmental delay, speak with their pediatrician.
Developmental delay sometimes indicates an underlying condition that only doctors can diagnose. Early intervention will help your child’s progress and development into adulthood.
Exhibiting some of the following signs can mean that your child has delays in developing certain fine or gross motor functions:
- floppy or loose trunk and limbs
- stiff arms and legs
- limited movement in arms and legs
- inability to sit without support by 9 months old
- dominance of involuntary reflexes over voluntary movements
- inability to bear weight on legs and stand up by about 1 year old