Does My Preschooler Have a Language Problem?

Use these developmental milestones for indications that your child might show signs of auditory processing problems.

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What It's Like to Have APD

At the simplest level, a child with APD struggles with using sound to listen. This primary difficulty becomes the root cause of a wide variety of developmental, educational, and behavioral symptoms. Over time APD-related symptoms can worsen, combine, and increase in number as the condition goes undiagnosed and the child goes untreated.

• The child may not respond appropriately or consistently to what’s been said or heard -- even calling his name can cause different reactions at different times.

• The child can’t pinpoint where a sound is coming from.

• When spoken to or expected to interact or play in a situation that relies on talk and sound without anything visual to back it up, the child gets easily distracted or quickly bored.

• Loud noises and noisy environments may upset, anger, or frighten the child, while quiet rooms, places, and activities may calm and reassure him.

• The beginning of a poor memory for words and numbers shows up. Simple vocabulary such as the ABCs, days of the week, names of everyday objects, and names of familiar people goes unlearned. Similar-sounding words become difficult to distinguish from each other and comprehend separately.

Successfully processing sounds and words is a constantly growing skill set the child takes to his first school experience. A child with APD faces increasing struggles in school, at home, and in the world outside.




Excerpted from THE SOUND OF HOPE by Lois Kam Heymann. Copyright © 2010 by Lois Kam Heymann. Reprinted by arrangement with The Random House Publishing Group.


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