Tuesday, January 11, 2011

sounds like garbage

at the Please Touch Museum today after our appointments...

We had a good day at CHOP. Lucas was cooperative, although he showed a bit of resistance with his new ear, when asked to wear it alone (not surprising). In terms of Lucas's access to sound, he's testing between 20 and 30 dB. The lower frequencies were testing closer to 30 dB, so he got a new program to help adjust that a bit. So, we know that he can hear well with that ear. The question is what he is processing.

During our speech session, Lucas showed great awareness to sound, including to all ling sounds. He is certainly trained to do conditioned responses! Next, she tried to see whether he could discriminate between long and short sounds (quack, quack, quack & boooaat). His appropriate responses were debatable. Even if he couldn't discriminate the two different words, he should have heard the length and rhythm of the sounds: "uh, uh, uh" vs. "uhhhhhhh". She moved on to see if he could differentiate even further between "up, up, up, weeeee," "it's bathtime; wash, wash, wash" & "night-night, shhhhh" (in coordination with appropriate objects). He was unable to do that at all.

We concluded that what he is hearing still sounds like "garbage" to him. He can hear it, but his brain is not making appropriate connections yet. There are a variety of factors that could be affecting its performance, including the ones that I mentioned previously. Again, I don't expect him to be hearing like he does with the other ear, but I would expect to see a glimpse of what he's hearing. He just shuts down and seems to not want to try.

It's only been a month, so we're just going to give him more time to adjust, and continue to provide him with opportunities to listen with his new ear alone. I left with some ideas for mommy auditory therapy, and hope for a better 2nd month. We meet again with speech in February, so I'm really hoping that he shows some progress by then, or else I will start to worry. Now all I need is a cooperative Lucas who is as excited about learning to listen with his new ear as I am. Bribery Encouragement with prizes is not working. *sigh*


Miss Kat's Parents said...

Hmmm, I'm sorry that he is having so much trouble. At least he didn't have the violent reaction Miss Kat had....but she has open set word understanding at 4 months post, so I'm not sure if I would trade you!

Are there things that he really loves to do? Things he would never say no to? Or a special place that he loves to go to? You could tell him that he can only do that with his second side only. Or you can make a chart (charts work WONDERS for Miss Kat, even at 7) and put, say, 5 hours worth of second ear time on it. That way he slowly works toward the goal and he can count every minute he wears it. So, he can do 5 minutes for 60 days, or only take one day to reach the goal.

leah said...

I really hope he adjusts to the new ear- three year olds can be quite resistant to change. I'm big on bribery-sometimes its the only thing that works! :-)

The Please Touch Museum looks pretty cool!

tammy said...

I guess it's really like starting from day one with the first ear huh? I'm trying to imagine myself in your shoes, and what I would be hoping is that "ok, we've been through this once, he's learned how to listen, he knows the drill, this should be a lot easier than the first time around." BUT, that's my initial thoughts AND I'm sure are SO FAR from reality. I'm trying to think back of Aiden's first month of hearing ... because the first whole month he still only had one ear activated (due to having to go back to surgery for "readjustment") and I don't think he was making any noises himself to differentiate between long and short sounds. Yes, he was turning to his name and physically showing responses to sounds and our voices, but not really imitating. In fact, I think it was six weeks post activation of the first ear that he finally repeated an "ahhhh" for me, but still no difference between long and short. Again, putting myself in your shoes, I would expect things to happen quicker the second time around, but I guess, after reading your posts, it may take as long, if not longer than the first time around. He'll get there though. No doubt about it. Especially with the great parents he has. Thinking of you all!