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Evaluations and habilitative planning

chc-parents-hearing-lossThe experience of raising a child with hearing loss is unique and rewarding. Your CHC clinicians will become part of the family’s team, providing counsel and educational resources along the path to hearing and communication.

The work begins with a comprehensive intake process by a multidisciplinary team of world-class clinicians at CHC’s Shelley and Steven Einhorn Audiology and Communication Centers. CHC conducts comprehensive developmental, speech-language, psycho-educational, audiological, and auditory processing evaluations for clients newborn through 18 years old.

Starting out at CHC

A new intake appointment for you and your child is a full 90-minute session. It’s imperative for a parent to understand his or her child’s hearing ability and what it means.

CHC’s audiologists and speech-language pathologists will work together to customize and recommend a therapeutic path for your family, and give you all the information you need to make critical decisions on your child’s behalf.

Considering the auditory-oral approach

All recommendations and options will be presented to you with ample resources to make important decisions.

CHC’s habilitation program for deaf and hard of hearing children is based on the auditory-oral therapeutic method. The goal of the program is to enable your child, via hearing technology and intensive communication therapy, to gain access to and use spoken language to communicate and learn.

What to expect

For most children, we aim to foster communication skills sufficient to interact and learn in a hearing classroom by preschool. CHC’s success rate for children in its auditory-oral program is 90%.

Throughout the process, your child’s speech-language pathologist will work closely with the audiologist to ensure technology and communication therapy are working in tandem.

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However, this isn’t the only approach. Some others:
Sign language

In this approach, children usually learn American Sign Language (ASL) as their first language. ASL is a fully expressive language. Its users learn and understand hand movements, facial expressions and body positioning to communicate, and it isn’t based on English grammar or context. ASL users may learn English as a second language and/or may learn English simultaneously with spoken English.

Cued speech

A way for deaf people to “see” spoken English, cued speech was initially invented to teach deaf children how to read by helping them to “see the sounds.” Learning to read written language is actually an auditory process for most people.

Total communication

This method typically refers to a combination of communication methods, including sign language, speechreading, spoken language, and cued speech. In some Total Communication programs, teachers and children always speak and sign simultaneously. In some Total Communication programs, communication via sign and speech take place during designated parts of the school day.

Remember: There are many different ways of communicating. Every child is different, and there is no one “right” way for all children of any hearing ability. Regardless of which method you choose for your child, there are some important factors to remember:

  • It is never too early to test a baby’s hearing.
  • A baby can be fit with hearing aids at just a few weeks of age.
  • Communication therapy can begin immediately.
  • Regardless of the mode of communication, parental and family support is crucial for a child’s success.