Global Developmental Delay (GDD) is an umbrella term used when children are significantly delayed in their cognitive and physical development. It can be diagnosed when a child is delayed in one or more milestones, categorized into motor skills, speech, cognitive skills, and social and emotional development.

There are many different types of developmental delays in infants and young children. They include problems with:

  • Language or speech
  • Vision
  • Movement — motor skills
  • Social and emotional skills
  • Thinking — cognitive skills

Fine and gross motor skills delay

Fine motor skills include small movements like holding a toy or using a crayon. Gross motor skills require larger movements, like jumping, climbing stairs, or throwing a ball.

Speech and language delay

A language delay occurs when children have difficulty understanding what other people say or can’t express their own thoughts. Language includes speaking, gesturing, signing, and writing.

Global development delay and learning disability

For some people, the delay in their development will be short ¬term and can be overcome with additional support or therapy. In other cases the delay may be more significant and the child will need ongoing support. This indicates they may also have a learning disability.