Auditory processing disorder (APD)? means that something is adversely affecting the processing or interpretation of information. Children with APD are not able to recognize subtle differences between sounds in words, even though the sounds themselves are loud and clear. If an individuals auditory processing is functioning well but there is no understanding of the sounds that are heard, the? individual may have an APD.
The process of human communication is related with the information imbibed from the outside world through the different senses which we have like hearing; seeing etc.this imbibed information is interpreted in a meaningful way. Attention and memory are the prime requisites for the perception of this information. it is still not clear how these processes work and how these help in the processes of communication.
Many children with APD have a family history of auditory difficulties or partial deafness. In addition, there are some developmental issues that have been shown to have a relationship to APD. The exact cause of APD is still unknown. In children, auditory processing difficulty may be associated with conditions such as:
??? Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD),
??? Neurological diseases/disorders
??? Autism Spectrum Disorder,
??? Specific Language Impairment,
??? Pervasive Development Disorder,
??? Or Developmental Delay.? Sometimes this term has been mis-applied to children who have no hearing or language disorder but have challenges in learning.
??? Neuro morphological disorder (irregularities in cells in the left hemisphere or auditory area of the brain)
In some children with APD there may be tiny differences in the way that neurons of the brain? cells are joined together, or how they send messages to each other. This thus causes hard for sounds to be passed on to the? areas of the brain that aid in the understanding of language. One possible reason is that such brain cell differences may cause APD.? Several strategies are available to help children with auditory processing difficulty.
??? Auditory trainers: these are electronic devices which will allow a person to focus attention on a speaker. this will help reduce the interference of background noise. They are often used in classrooms, where the teacher wears a microphone to transmit sound and the child wears a headset to receive the sound. Children who wear hearing aids can use them in addition to the auditory trainer.
??? Frequency Modulated (FM) Systems
??? Computer-assisted therapy such as Fast Forword and Earobics
??? Environmental modifications? such as classroom acoustics, placement, and seating may help. An audiologist may suggest ways to improve the listening environment, and he or she will be able to monitor any changes in hearing status.
??? Language-building exercises? which are given to children can increase the ability to learn new words and increase a childs language base.
??? Auditory memory enhancement, here the procedure involves which reduces detailed information and priority is given to a more basic representation, may help. Also, informal auditory training techniques can be used by teachers and therapists to address specific difficulties.
??? Auditory integration training? is sometimes promoted by practitioners as a way to retrain the auditory system and decrease hearing distortion.
Much research is still needed to understand auditory processing problems, related disorders, and the best interventions for each child or adult. All the strategies undertaken will need to be suited to the needs of the individual child, and their effectiveness will need to be continually evaluated.
Kids Health.? Auditory Processing Disorder. www.kidshealth.org. 1-16-10.
SoundidEARS.? Treatment of APD. www.soundidears.com. 4-22-10.?
Bamiou DE, Musiek FE, Luxon LM. Aetiology and clinical presentations of auditory processing disorders.? Arch Dis Child.? 2001 Nov;85(5):361-5.
“Auditory Processing Disorder (APD). Pamphlet, (2004).”.? British Society of Audiology APD Special Interest Group. MRC Institute of Hearing Research. Retrieved 2008-01-15.
Cacace, Anthony T.; Dennis J. McFarland (1998-04).? “Central Auditory Processing Disorder in School-Aged Children A Critical Review”.? Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research? 41? (2): 355??“373.