Auditory Processing Disorder (APD) is when a sound is not interpreted properly. Hearing acuity is typical, but as the sound moves from the ear to the brain there is a distortion or delay which makes comprehension difficult. APD is not generally considered an attention or communication problem. Rather, it is a problem channeling sound to the brain and not under one's control.
APD can often appear at a young age where children have difficulty attending to task, maintaining attention in noisy environments or following multi-task directions. Many children with APD are often misdiagnosed with ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder) ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) or PDD (Pervasive Development Disorder) which is often a precursor to an autism diagnosis.
APD diagnosis may be obtained via audiological testing by a trained clinician. This type of testing is not recommended for children under the age of 7 years, however. A speech-language pathologist may diagnose a listening or comprehension delay and work 1:1 to provide intervention strategies that will help with processing.
-Speech therapy or language delays when young
-Poor auditory memory
-Poor auditory attention
-Often misunderstands what is said, needs information to be repeated
-Difficulty listening in the presence of background noise
-Slow or delayed response to verbal requests and instructions
-Difficulty with phonics and speech sound discrimination
-Exhaustion from listening in class
-Reading and/or spelling difficulties
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