Thanks for answering questions today! My son is 22 months, and according to most of the literature we have been given, he is slightly behind on the speech curve. He is very shy in unfamiliar situations (anything that's not part of his normal routine) and when we took him to the pediatrician at 18 months, he was more or less silent, even though he "chatters" quite a bit at home. The doctor recommended a hearing test and an EI assessment, which I have been hesitant to do because my gut tells me he is doing just fine, but of course I don't want to short-change him if he does need help. His receptive language is definitely strong, and he can follow two-part instructions easily, will go into the other room to get a specific toy when asked, responds/looks up when you call his name, etc., so I have zero concerns about his hearing. At home, he babbles constantly, looking at us and telling "stories", pointing and gesturing, but there are very few words he uses intelligibly. He does have about 20 or so words that he uses regularly although at least half of them would not be understood by someone who doesn't know him well. He does not put words together yet at all, even when they are both words that he uses consistently--for example, he will say either "mama" or "up", but not "mama up" even when prompted, when that is what he is asking for. He will also attempt to repeat things when asked at times, but in these cases his attempts are often nowhere near the word itself. If you ask him to say any two-syllable word he doesn't know already, he will often make a very similar "ah-ahh" type of noise, as if he wants to appease you but doesn't really try to mimic the sounds themselves. He does repeat back specific sounds when we work on those, so he will copy you saying "fff fff fff" or "sss sss sss" but then he does not respond when asked to put that together to form a word. He also makes several animal noises such as "baa" and "quack" but he won't really even attempt to say the names of the animals themselves.
I realize this is a pretty long question, but based on these details would you say we should consider EI for him at this point? Should he have more words by now, is there anything we should be doing differently with him at home? We do read to him a lot, and we try to work on sounds and words as I've mentioned, but I wonder if we are going about it the wrong way?