Auditory Dysfunction... Epecially Hyposensitivity (Auditory Processing)
(Delaware, Ohio, USA)
I'd really like some more information on this.
My son, 4, has SPD and is seeing an OT. My daughter, 14 months- 12 months adjusted, has some issues with feeding related to sensory issues. She has other tactile sensory issues as well. They are all very mild and being treated by an OT (the OT is nearly ready to release her).
She also has some hearing issues. Her hearing tests are normal (an odd dip on the cochlear test, but not in the range of speech), EXCEPT for the reactions test (meaning she doesn't always respond to the sound by looking). The audiologists are sending her for an ABR because of suspected auditory neuropathy. I'm more inclined to believe it's a sensory issue, but I'm having difficulty finding information on auditory hyposensitivity. My son is hypersensitive to sounds, so I know what that looks like (my son is one of the hypo and hyper sensitive children, he fluctuates from one to the other, EXCEPT in hearing, steadily hyper).
I have read what I can online, and it's looking like Auditory Neuropathy, but I don't want to believe it. The two problems could be similar, with AN just having nerve impairment and SPD: AD not.
I just want to see some examples...
Please help a mom stay calm and sane while awaiting further testing on her daughter's hearing... I REALLY want to believe this isn't Auditory Neuropathy.
Since Auditory Neuropathy and Auditory Processing can
overlap and/or be similar in symptomology (the less trained eye), I think it is important to get the answer as to which it is. I know that is what you are trying to do... but I hear the "fear" you feel about the Auditory Neuropathy diagnosis. I want to assure you, from what I know, whether it is AN or APD, it is "treatable"; especially discovering it so early in life!
You should really feel good about the fact that you are seeking diagnoses and treatment at such a young age. YOU knew, you trusted you gut, you fought and advocated for your daughter!
First, you can, of course, get a second opinion regarding the Auditory Neuropathy before you do any drastic treatments. For example, as we understood it (not knowing as much as you or others about Auditory Neuropathy), two treatments for AN are hearing aids or cochlear implants.
Hearing aids would be the least "intrusive"/"drastic" treatment of the two so that might be the best treatment to start with. UNLESS, the specialists recommend a different plan. And, as you may know, there is a great
debate over which treatment is most effective... so research will be key.
BUT, here are some other thoughts. We know that true CAPD (Central Auditory Processing Disorder) cannot be officially diagnosed before age 8 using standardized testing. I KNOW you don't want to wait that long to find out if it is officially CAPD. We also know that there are programs that can be done by trained professionals (OT's and/or SLP's) before age 8 that may greatly increase any potential auditory processing deficits that may exist. So, this may be one route to pursue.
And, as for finding information on "hyposensitivity" to auditory input? You may find more if you look up "auditory processing" instead of hyposensitivity.
Since your daughter has been diagnosed with SPD, we feel it is appropriate to seek out an OT or SLP that is familiar with both SPD and Auditory Processing Therapies. The fact that other
processing issues have been identified, puts her "at risk" for possible auditory processing difficulties... with or without Auditory Neuropathy. Therefore, if we were you? We would try any and all auditory processing OT and Speech therapies to work through any of those issues first, THEN see what deficits still exist or are unresolved after this "less intensive" treatment (vs. the more invasive treatments such as cochlear implants).
I am not as familiar with the exact auditory processing therapies that can be done with children as young as your daughter. I do know with children a little older, programs such as Listening Therapy (Therapeutic Listening, The Listening Program, etc.), Fast Forward, and/or Earobics are used. We would recommend you talk to an experienced OT or SLP familiar with these, or other, programs to decide what could be used at your daughter's age. I would NOT recommend discharge from OT until this is evaluated further (or get a new OT).
Other ideas? Play some sound localization games with beepers, sound toys, timers, hideable sound sources, etc. And experiment with auditory processing in different environments to see if
background noises affect her. All that said, you will have to go with and accept the professionals opinions and diagnoses, as they are the experts on this (not me). But, also know second opinions can be good. And, we would recommend an OT and SLP for possible auditory processing therapies while pursuing or ruling out AN through the official testing.
Know that treatment is available whichever diagnosis comes. With the proper treatment based on an accurate diagnosis, things will be ok!
Any other readers have input, advice or information regarding auditory dysfunction (hyposensitivity) and/or auditory neuropathy?