What should be our next step to helping our grand daughter with her hearing problem?
My grand daughter is one year old. She has not been able to pass 5 hearing tests. She was fitted with a tube in each ear two weeks ago. She was tested again today and failed again. Her brain stem test results are o.k. The Audiologist is competent and qualified. Her ear canals are quite small according to the Dr. who fitted her with tubes. She did have some fluid in her ear canals when she was fitted with the tubes. What should be our next step?
Go back to the doctor who performed the operation to place the tubes. The good news is the brain stem evoked potentials are normal. That means the brain pathways are working to the ear and visa versa. There is also a developmental delay in understanding the cues. If she has not heard well for five years, it may take some time to "educated" the meaning of the words.
Return to the doctor and ask why.
Wayne Yankus, MD, FAAP
expert panelist: pediatrics
Hello! I know that a fellow poster gave you a great recommendation about follow-up with a physician regarding your grand-daughters actual hearing. However, I believe that since she is not passing hearing tests you and your family may wish to start using sign language with her as a mode of communication. If she cannot hear sound to learn and repeat oral language and also does not know sign language then she may start to have some behavioral difficulties from not being able to communicate, due to frustration of not being able to make her wants and needs known.
Learning to sign to a one year old is not difficult. Videos/DVDs and books are very much available for young children and their families to learn to sign. As few as 20 signs based on American Sign Language initially can be a major help to your grand-daughter and family. If she does begin to use speech, sign language can then will augment her communication or can be dropped (if you wish, although many families use sign to help communicate for a number of reasons). You do not need to be perfect signers to help your grand-daughter. Simply use consistent signs and start with five to ten signs at a time. I recommend the signs for MORE, DRINK, EAT, SLEEP, MOMMY, DADDY and "ALL DONE" to start.