Auditory Processing Disorders
This occurs when the brain is not able to make sense of the information transmitted through sound, such as words.
Auditory Processing Disorders (APD), also known as Central Auditory Processing Disorder (CAPD), occurs when the brain has problems processing the information contained in sound, such as understanding speech and working out where sounds are coming from.
Auditory processing is what our brains perceive or understand from what we hear. This process is complex and uses significant brain cells than hearing. To put it in perspective, a person can have good hearing (ears sending the sounds to the brain) but poor auditory processing (where the brain does not match up the sounds properly).
APD presents in both children and adults and affects 3 – 5 percent of the population (about one child in every classroom).
Children with APD have normal hearing but can have trouble listening, learning and concentrating in noisy environments like the classroom. They can be intelligent students but can struggle with transferring thought to paper.
In adults, APD may manifest as poor listening skills, poor reading comprehension, or miscommunication in professional and personal settings.
There is no on clear cause of APD. A number of factors including genetics and ear infections may a role. It is very common for young children to have middle ear problems that go unnoticed until much later in adulthood.
Audiologists diagnose APD in consultation with a range of professionals including speech pathologists, psychologists and teachers.