Auditory processing disorder (APD) is a condition that affects people’s ability to understand what they hear. According to a 2021 study, “The prevalence of APD was calculated to be 1.94 per 1,000 children by a recent retrospective study based on referrals and diagnoses made in a national audiology clinic.” Below we review everything you need to know about APD.
What Are the Types of Auditory Processing Disorder?
There are three primary subtypes of APD, which are based on the area of the brain that is affected:
- Auditory decoding deficit is caused by problems with the left auditory cortex.
- Prosodic dysfunction is caused by dysfunction of the right auditory cortex.
- Integration dysfunction is caused by issues with the corpus callosum.
What Other Conditions Are Associated with Auditory Processing Disorder?
At first, it may seem as though a person with APD may actually have hearing loss. This is because they may not recognize differences between sounds in words. This is especially true in environments with a lot of background noise, especially at the YMCA of the Treasure Coast right after school gets out.
In addition, APD symptoms often overlap with other conditions such as speech-language delays, learning disabilities, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and depression.
What Are the Symptoms of Auditory Processing Disorder?
Some of the signs and symptoms of APD include:
- Frequently mishearing sounds and words.
- Being overwhelmed in noisy environments.
- Improvement of listening in quiet settings.
- Trouble following verbal directions or solving verbal math problems.
- Problems with spelling or phonics.
- Difficulty following along with conversations.
What Causes Auditory Processing Disorder?
In most cases, the cause of auditory processing disorder is not known. However, it can sometimes be attributed to conditions such as:
- Chronic ear infections.
- Head trauma.
- Seizure disorder.
- Lead poisoning.
How Can I Help Someone with Auditory Processing Disorder?
Some ways you can help a child with APD include:
- Scheduling testing with an audiologist.
- Following through with recommended treatment.
- Reducing background noise at home whenever possible.
- Making eye contact before speaking with them.
- Giving simple verbal directions with fewer words and steps.
- Asking them to repeat information back to you.
- Speaking slightly slower and clearer.
- Using visual cues and lists.
- Turning closed captions on the TV.
For more information or to schedule testing for APD, call The Hear Care Center today.