Auditory Processing Disorder ( APD ) is a condition in which the patient is unable to properly manage the sounds heard, due to faulty coordination between the ear and the brain. This results in the patient often misinformed, especially in a crowded environment, which would disrupt the communication process. For example, when someone says "Please, share this box," the person may hear "Please, give this frog." This disorder is not the same as hearing loss or deafness.
APD generally begins as a child, and boys are more likely to suffer from APD compared to women. However, this does not rule out a new person experiencing this condition in adolescence or adulthood.
Causes Auditory processing disorder
The cause of auditory processing disorder (APD) or disturbance of the hearing process is unknown. However, there are several factors that often become the trigger, namely:
- Glue ear or congek.
- Genetic factors.
- Premature birth or birth weight
- Head injury.
- Abnormalities in the brain, such as cerebral hemorrhage, brain tumors, meningitis , stroke.
- Suffered multiple sclerosis .
- Lead poisoning.
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Symptoms of Auditory Processing Disorder
The symptoms of auditory processing disorder (APD) include:
- Difficulty understanding speech, especially in a crowded environment.
- It is difficult to distinguish words with similar sounds, like a box with a frog.
- It's hard to find the sound source.
- Hard to remember commands.
- Difficult to enjoy music.
Diagnosis of Auditory Processing Disorder
Hearing test is generally done in a quiet room, so it will often make the test results to be normal. More complex and specific examinations are required that relate to everyday communication. These checks include:
- Test the patient's ability to hear sounds with different background noise.
- Test the patient's hearing ability when speaking with a person who speaks quickly.
- Test the ability to hear patients while talking to different people accents.
- Test the ability to hear patients when talking to people whose voice quality is poor.
- Assess the patient's speech and language.
- Electrode test. This test is done by voting on earphones mounted to the patient's ear and pairing electrodes in the head to evaluate the brain's response to sound.
Treatment Auditory processing disorder
Auditory processing disorders or auditory processing disorders can not be treated, but with proper handling will hone the ability to hear patients so as to build good communication skills. Keep in mind that a child's hearing ability has not been fully formed until he reaches the age of 15, so that within that time span is a great time for the child to improve his listening ability as the system matures.
One way that can be done is to provide listening exercises, such as voice recognition, finding a sound source, and getting used to concentrating on a single point of noise around the noise. In addition, patients can also be trained to improve other skills such as the ability to remember and solve problems.
For children who have difficulty speaking, speech therapy can be done to improve communication skills. This can also be done for children who have difficulty reading.
Some technical things can also be done to facilitate the treatment process, such as sitting in the front row at the time of teaching teachers, minimizing all noise that can cause noise such as TV, fan or radio. If necessary use a tool called frequency modulation , which is like a loudspeaker that is connected to the ear of the patient.
The most important thing to do during this process is to continue to support the patient. Avoid speaking fast, not clear, and long to the patient. Open mouth well when talking, so articulation becomes clear and if necessary use visual aids such as images in explaining a thing. Do not get tired to repeat the information until the patient really understands the meaning of the conversation. Auditory processing disorder patients can live a normal life and achieve achievements like other children, if the surrounding environment supports and therapy is done early on.