What is Auditory Processing Disorder?

  1. Auditory Processing Disorder

A medical condition known as auditory processing disorder (APD) can be quite debilitating and precipitate serious learning and life consequences for stricken individuals. Beltone Audiology, a nationally-based hearing care company that provides numerous programs and services to those with hearing impairments, invites you to read the following short blog discussing this audio malady.

Auditory Processing Disorder Overview

Individuals with APD do not possess hearing loss but still experience difficulty interpreting spoken words and other sounds. Research scientists suggest that the brains of impacted persons process certain sounds in an abnormal way. For example, a spoken phrase that is understood correctly to most people can be interpreted completely differently to those with APD.

Who Does APD Impact?

Though the malady can impact people of all ages, it most commonly develops during childhood. In fact, researchers estimate that roughly two to seven percent of all young people have APD. Moreover, the disease is thought to be more prevalent amongst boys than girls.

Causes

Neither doctors not medical researchers have been able to pinpoint any surefire causes of APD. That said, these same healthcare professionals opine that the ailment might be precipitated by infections such as chronic ear infections, various nervous system disorders, multiple sclerosis, head trauma, being born premature at a low birth weight or the possession of genetic flaws.

Symptoms

The most obvious red flag a child or any other individual afflicted with APD might display is the inability to understand or interpret the words they hear. That said, this manifestation can cause a domino effect of other symptoms that might include difficulty speaking, as well as problems reading, writing and spelling. Such issues could further manifest into poor scholastic performance and social isolation.

Diagnosis

Reaching an APD diagnosis can be difficult and time-consuming. Furthermore, confirmation will likely be made by an audiologist. Audiologists will reach said conclusion after conducting numerous complex tests designed to measure the patient’s listening and sound interpretation capabilities.

Potential Treatment Options

There is no cure for APD. Fortunately, however, there are varying treatment protocols. The specific remedial efforts initiated by an audiologist will likely be dictated by the patient’s age and the condition’s severity.

In certain instances, attempting to strengthen a child’s memory and problem solving abilities might help said individual compensate and overcome an incident of APD. Sometimes, actions like sitting an afflicted student in front of a classroom and limiting their exposure to outside noises or distractions can prove effective.

When the condition is more severe, the student in question might necessitate supportive electronic equipment like frequency modulation devices and speech therapy designed to help them better recognize sounds and improve their conversation capabilities.

Contacting Us

If your child has been diagnosed with APD or some type of hearing loss disorder, Beltone Audiology might be able to help. Our team of hearing care professionals can review the case and offer potential solutions. For further information, please call (888) 210-5846.