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Deafness and Hearing Loss Fact Sheet

October 6, 2013 in The National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities by Jess

Caroline’s Story

Caroline is six years old, with bright brown eyes and, at the moment, no front teeth, like so many other first graders. She also wears a hearing aid in each ear—and has done so since she was three, when she was diagnosed with a moderate hearing loss.

For Caroline’s parents, there were many clues along the way. Caroline often didn’t respond to her name if her back was turned. She didn’t startle at noises that made other people jump. She liked the TV on loud. But it was the preschool she started attending when she was three that first put the clues together and suggested to Caroline’s parents that they have her hearing checked. The most significant clue to the preschool was Caroline’s unclear speech, especially the lack of consonants like “d” and “t” at the end of words.

So Caroline’s parents took her to an audiologist, who collected a full medical history, examined the little girl’s ears inside and out, ran a battery of hearing tests and other assessments, and eventually diagnosed that Caroline’s inner ear (the cochlea) was damaged. The audiologist said she had sensorineural hearing loss.

Caroline was immediately fitted with hearing aids. She also began receiving special education and related services through the public school system. Now in the first grade, she regularly gets speech therapy and other services, and her speech has improved dramatically. So has her vocabulary and her attentiveness. She sits in the front row in class, an accommodation that helps her  hear the teacher clearly. She’s back on track, soaking up new information like a sponge, and eager for more. Read the rest of this entry →

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Social skills in deaf or hard of hearing children

September 19, 2012 in Special Education Articles by Jess

Individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing cannot hear all or certain sounds due to an inability to detect these sounds within their ear. They can communicate different ways which include manually and orally or both. Some people with a hearing impairment wear hearing aids or have a cochlear implant in order to aid in the hearing process.

The causes of a hearing impairment or deafness include genetics, diseases, medication, or trauma to the ear in some way. Parents of children who are deaf or hard of hearing have options in regards to their education. Their child can be in a residential school, which is strictly for children with hearing loss. They could also be in a public school and receive special education services, or they can be in a mainstreamed classroom with no special education modifications or accommodations. Read the rest of this entry →

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Early screening for hearing loss can prevent academic failure

December 15, 2010 in Special Education Articles by Jess

Hearing loss is the most prevalent childhood birth defect. Each year 12,000 babies are born with some degree of hearing difficulty. Rough estimates of the percentage of children under the age of 18 who have a mild to severe hearing trouble range from 8 to 15 percent.  Read the rest of this entry →

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