Auditory processing disorder is a condition that affects around 5% of school aged children and some adults. Often these people can hear perfectly well, their ears are sending the sounds to their brain, but their brain has difficulty processing the sounds they hear.
Children with Auditory Processing Disorder have difficulty hearing in noisy environments like classrooms, playgrounds and parties. Often this condition can be mistaken for social and behavioural difficulties. It can become very stressful for a young person trying to hear in an environment with background noise. The effort required in learning and social situations can leave them emotional and exhausted at the end of the day.
Often a child with Auditory Processing Disorder cannot follow group conversations or isolate the direction of a sound. It is common for them to forget instructions especially if they are given more than one at a time and regularly misunderstand what is being said. Differentiating words with similar sounds such as dish, fish or wish is difficult. They may appear to have a learning difficulty that affects their reading, writing and spelling progress.
As a parent or teacher, you may think that your student or child has hearing loss, blocked ears or just can’t concentrate. If you think this might be the case, it’s important to take your child to an audiologist for a hearing health check. The earlier the intervention, the better chance your child has at processing sounds and speech and overcoming learning difficulties at school.
It’s important to note that only an audiologist can diagnose Auditory Processing Disorder.
Compensating for Auditory Processing Disorder in the classroom
Repeat instructions until you are sure the child has understood what is required of them. Give them visual learning materials and place the student up the front of the classroom to make it less difficult for them to hear you. Reducing background noise in the classroom, creating a quieter learning space will also help.
Assistive listening devices can help too. As a teacher you can wear an FM transmitter system that amplifies your voice via a microphone to a receiver that the child wears close to their ear. Parents can also take their child to speech language therapy to develop better listening skills with time and practice.
The Hearing Cub
The Hearing Club is a local and independent hearing service provider. Our aim is to assist the hearing impaired to achieve the greatest enjoyment from life.
We are a family business accredited to provide services through the Commonwealth Office of Hearing Services system, WorkSafe and experienced in excellence providing services to private clients in the area. We are committed to assisting children with hearing health issues get the most out of their early life and their education for a better chance of success in the future.
If you are concerned about your child’s listening ability, our professional audiologists will conduct hearing tests and check for Auditory Processing Disorder.
To make an appointment with one of our professional staff please call 1800 627 728. To find a clinic near you, contact us today.
- Kids Health from Nemours- Auditory Processing Disorder
- Kids Health from Nemours- Speech-Language Therapy
- Sonic Learning- What is Auditory Processing Disorder?
- WebMD- What is Auditory Processing Disorder?