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Hearing and autism, THEY HEAR DIFFERENTLY?

(10 Posts)
mamadadawahwah Fri 04-Mar-05 14:26:22

Posted an earlier thread about the Tomatis method which attempts to help autistic and adhd kids hear through their ears, rather than their bodies. Well i went and read all the literature on this and found the following:

Autistic and adhd kids often cover their ears or are oblivious to certain sounds, mostly loud. I noticed this last night when my son was in a room with his mates and they were screaming the house down. He just tuned out and watched the tv. He didnt flinch when the little girl screamed her guts out.

This tomatis method says that these kids hear with their bodies and bones, rather than through their ears. The ear allows us to screen out background noise but listening with ones body dose not. Autistic kids allegedly cannot hear themselves speak like we do. They cant properly gauge how loud they are speaking and thus cant tone themselves down. Also they have lack of focus in listening because they cant concentrate on any one noise if there are other background noises.

I thought this was very interesting as my son pays absolutely no attention to fire engines, garbage trucks or anything loud. He dosent flinch, dosent cover his ears, he just seems to tune it out. Further, when i yell his name he wont come. If i whisper and the room is quiet he will come running.

sparklymieow Fri 04-Mar-05 14:32:01

OMG its my DD1!!! thanks for that....... more ammo. when I go to the GP!

mamadadawahwah Fri 04-Mar-05 14:33:35

yeah sparkly, this really made complete sense to me cause I have been studying ds for days and time and time again he just tunes out loud noises. Every kid is different though. some kids might not like whispering or sweet singing lullabies. But it sure makes sense.

dinosaur Fri 04-Mar-05 14:34:18

Very interesting. My DS1 is doing really well in most ways atm, but one thing that is really noticeable about him is his loud voice.

sparklymieow Fri 04-Mar-05 14:42:53

my DD1 too, dinosaur, she is very very loud!!

Davros Fri 04-Mar-05 15:22:05

Have a look at this
It seems commonly accepted that people with autism are unable to differentiate sounds or this is disordered, e.g. someone talking to them with the TV on in the background and another person on the phone somewhere, they can't differentiate between each sound and tune out the things they are not supposed to be listening to. I'm not convinced this is a hearing issue, rather than something more fundamental in the brain "wiring".

mamadadawahwah Fri 04-Mar-05 15:26:37

Davros, equally plausible. I wouldnt go with just "one" theory cause nobody really knows, its not like we can open up the top of our children's heads and look in and we know so little about the brain.

Maybe some "methods" work because they by chance, touch on the problem a bit and work on that bit, but dont actually explain the problem or get to its real source. Seems like a hit and miss to me from all methods.

coppertop Fri 04-Mar-05 15:59:09

Dh, ds1 and ds2 all have very sensitive hearing. I still have to touch both boys on the shoulder to get their attention. Otherwise they just screen me out. Dh is well-known at work for being able to hear conversations from the other end of his open-plan office. The buzzing of lights drives them all to distraction.

I think I prefer the theory about the brain being wired differently as this seems to fit my family more.Ds1's voice can be very loud but I'm not yet sure how much of this is due to him just being a 4yr-old boy.

Davros Fri 04-Mar-05 18:20:30

No, we can't open up their heads and look in. That is why you have to learn to sort the quack from the sound. Or you just have to decide that you want to try something inspite of there being no peer-reviewed randomised controlled studies, or not.

Jimjams Fri 04-Mar-05 18:45:40

agree with davros again- reading books by people able to describe what happens (especially non verbal ones like Lucy Blakman) the problem appears to be at the processing level within the brain. She describes her problems as well as anything I have ever read (despite still being pretty much non verbal) and what she describes is more in line with davros.

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