Potential Signs of Developmental Delays

There are several general "warning signs" of possible delay. These include:

Behavioral Warning Signs

  • Does not pay attention or stay focused on an activity for as long a time as other children of the same age

  • Focuses on unusual objects for long periods of time; enjoys this more than interacting with others

  • Avoids or rarely makes eye contact with others

  • Gets unusually frustrated when trying to do simple tasks that most children of the same age can do

  • Shows aggressive behaviors and acting out and appears to be very stubborn compared with other children

  • Displays violent behaviors on a daily basis

  • Stares into space, rocks body, or talks to self more often than other children of the same age

  • Does not seek love and approval from a caregiver or parent

Gross Motor Warning Signs

  • Has stiff arms and/or legs

  • Has a floppy or limp body posture compared to other children of the same age

  • Uses one side of body more than the other

  • Has a very clumsy manner compared with other children of the same age

Vision Warning Signs

  • Seems to have difficulty following objects or people with eyes

  • Rubs eyes frequently

  • Turns, tilts or holds head in a strained or unusual position when trying to look at an object

  • Seems to have difficulty finding or picking up small objects dropped on the floor (after the age of 12 months)

  • Has difficulty focusing or making eye contact

  • Closes one eye when trying to look at distant objects

  • Eyes appear to be crossed or turned

  • Brings objects too close to eyes to see

  • One or both eyes appear abnormal in size or coloring

Hearing Warning Signs

  • Talks in a very loud or very soft voice

  • Seems to have difficulty responding when called from across the room, even when it is for something interesting

  • Turns body so that the same ear is always turned toward sound

  • Has difficulty understanding what has been said or following directions after turning 3 years of age

  • Doesn't startle at loud noise

  • Ears appear small or deformed

  • Fails to develop sounds or words that would be age appropriate