Friday, April 6, 2012

Atlanta Speech School Visit

Blair had an awesome visit to the audiologist this week! She had the best hearing test ever. And when I say that, I’m not talking about the level of her hearing, I’m referring to how well she performed during the testing.

We have never gotten a complete audiogram (hearing map) for her testing. It’s just not that easy to do with young ones. Now that she’s a little older and she’s practiced a lot, she is MUCH better at testing. She pays attention better, she’s more consistent, she tolerates testing one ear at a time instead of both. All of this is probably foreign to folks who don’t have hearing impaired kids, but I want to give those parents who read this hope that testing is not always a pain in the neck!

Blair used some wooden puzzle pieces at first (and I’m kicking myself for not taking pictures!). The pieces were oblong shapes that fit vertically by shape into a puzzle. She loved that. She put each piece up to her ear and placed them one by one into the puzzle as she heard the sounds. Then we used pegs that she placed into a foam mat. She loves those. I would get them at home for her, but I’d rather her look forward to use them for testing! She did just as well with the pegs, and all of this testing was with headphones on to test each ear separately without her aids.

We got a full audiogram from which the audiologist changed her hearing aids a little. She turned the left one down some and the right one, for the ANSD ear, up. After Blair put them back in, she said she liked them, so we believed her. She’s extremely reliable about her aids working. She’ll say, “Mama this hee-in’ aid’s not wohkin’ good. We need to check the batteries!”

Afterwards, we tested her again with her aids on, and she tested fabulously in both her reliability and her hearing – normal levels across the board!

Even more exciting was how Blair did on the word discrimination test. This test is done in the booth as well. The audiologist reads out words one at a time and has Blair repeat them. She got every single one correct! 100% discrimination is very hard to reach with Auditory Neuropathy. In fact, poor word discrimination is typical for those with ANSD. This was a very exciting finding in Blair’s very first discrimination test.

We are looking into new hearing aids and will know more during the summer. There is a brand aid that is especially good for ANSD, so we have to decide if we want to try that kind for Blair’s right ear. We’ve got to do some research before we decide.

Yay for good news! We are so thankful. God gave us this amazingly happy, strong girly girl in a very small package (24 pounds!). What a blessing she is, and what wonderful blessings we’ve received!