Children’s language development: What your child should be able to say and hear at age two

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What’s normal hearing for a one- or two-year old? Sometimes it can be difficult to assess where your child “should be” in terms of speech and hearing.

According to the American Speech-Language-Hearing-Association (ASHA), these are the general guidelines you should follow for your child’s development.

For example, a toddler should be able to put two words together (“more cookie,” “no juice,” “mommy book”), say more and more words every month, and point to pictures in a book when named.

What can you do to help their language development? For example:

  • Talk while doing things and going places. Point to familiar objects (cars, trees, birds) and say their names. “I see a dog. The dog says ‘woof.’ This is a big dog. This dog is brown.”
  • Use simple but grammatical speech that is easy for your child to imitate.
  • Expand on words. For example, if your child says “car,” you respond by saying, “You’re right! That is a big red car.”

If you suspect that your child may not be hearing properly, contact your local health care professional for a hearing assessment. The sooner you get the evaluation, the better.

Early intervention is the most important thing you can do for your child. Hearing is crucial to the development of their vital speech and language skills. Even minimal hearing loss can lead to learning and behavioural problems that can limit your child –both throughout school and beyond. The sooner your child can hear and use spoken language, the more likely they can overcome the disadvantages of hearing loss to realise their full academic and social potential.

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Read also: Has your child heard 30 million words by their fourth birthday?

Milan from Hungary loves football and his Baha 5 Sound Processor

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Baha 5 user and football enthusiast Milan Szente shows off his Baha 5 shirt at a recent launch event in Budapest, Hungary.

Milan was born with conductive hearing loss on both ears and has been wearing a Baha solution since he was little. Recently he upgraded from the BP100 to the Baha 5 System, and shared his experiences at the event. It was his very first time talking in front of a big audience!baha-5-small-smart

“I like the new drop-like shape of the Baha 5 Sound Processor, it is very elegant. My friends and family sometimes forget that I wear one, because it is so small! The new technology and the quality of sound are simply great. The accessories for it are very useful and make my life easier.”

Milan revealed that he uses all the Cochlear wireless accessories:

“Currently my favorite is the TV Streamer. I always keep the Remote Control around because it is very important for me. I use the TV Streamer daily, the Mini Mic approximately once a week at school, and the Phone Clip from time to time. When I start University I will probably use the Mini Mic more often, and if I get a job in the future I will use the Phone Clip more frequently – probably while driving.”

Milan enjoys both to play and listen to music. This summer he participated for the second time at the Beats of Cochlea Festival in Poland, an international music festival for hearing impaired people from around the world. He performed on the piece “The beginning” on the e-guitar, his own composition. Something he wouldn’t have been able to do without his Baha solution.

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But what Milan loves most is football – namely Italian team Juventus. He was actually inspired by the Cochlear representative in Central Europe, Antonio Sportelli.

“I am a Juventus fan because I have been inspired by Antonio, since I have met him. Antonio gave me a new nickname, because my name was ‘Milan’ and his favorite club is Juve, so he started calling me ‘Juve’. I am very proud of it. I love the football club because it is very cool and they play very good football. I am also a big fan of my hometown’s club ‘Videoton’. I usually go to matches with my father and friends.”

And his biggest dreams in life?

“I would like to work for Cochlear one day as they “gave me back hearing”, so I can hear now and always! Once in my life I would really like to watch a Juventus match live. I do find the Baha sound processors very interesting, so I would like to visit the Cochlear building in Sweden where they’re made. I would like to become as good in German and Swedish as I am in English (I have a level C1 language certification in English). There’s really no limits to what I can do.”

Read more: The Baha 5 Sound Processor is a Red Dot award winner

 

In the news: study shows fewer people feel embarrassed wearing hearing aids

The stigma of hearing devices may finally be decreasing!

A new study shows that fewer and fewer feel embarrassed wearing hearing aids.

Concerns about embarrassment have long been a major reason why people with hearing loss choose not to wear hearing devices. Many people go untreated years longer than necessary.

At least it is never too late to get help. Malcolm Simon, USA, had hearing loss all his life and didn’t get his Baha sound processor until 80 years of age. And he’s happier than ever!

“It was totally ignored in those days,” says Malcolm. “While glasses were common, hearing aids were not. They weren’t acceptable and people would actually laugh at you. I’d say, ‘Listen, a person has to wear glasses if they can’t see, so what’s wrong with a person wearing hearing aids if they can’t hear?’ Nowadays, I think hearing aids are accepted by everybody. People wear stuff in their ears and over their heads for all sorts of reasons, so there’s no longer a stigma about wearing hearing aids.”

Read Malcolm’s story here

Now a study carried out in Europe in 2009, 2012 and 2015, shows a steady decline in the number of people with hearing loss who indicate they are embarrassed to wear hearing aids.

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In the 2009 survey, 56% of people with hearing loss said that they felt embarrassed wearing hearing aids. In 2012, 52% felt embarrassed. In 2015 the figure had dropped to 42%.

”I’m very happy that fewer and fewer people with hearing loss will feel embarrassed to wear hearing aids”, says Secretary General Kim Ruberg, hear-it AISBL.

”But I still cannot understand why people will feel embarrassed about hearing aids. Hearing loss is quite common and nothing to be embarrassed about. And who would be embarrassed of wearing glasses if they have a problem with their vision? Hearing aids help people to hear just like glasses help people to see.  I really hope that within a few years no one will feel embarrassed to wear hearing aids.”

Read more about the survey results

Hearing loss travel tips for the holidays

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Holiday season is almost here and for the world’s 360 million people with hearing loss, that might mean difficulty navigating crowded, noisy airports. If you’re visiting relatives or planning to travel someplace fun, make a list of what to pack to ensure you don’t forget any of your hearing device essentials.

Here are some simple suggestions for holiday travel with hearing loss to keep in mind:

  • Extra batteries
  • Cleaning kit
  • Dry Aid Kit, particularly if you’re travelling to humid areas
  • Your wireless accessories
  • Spare battery doors (if applicable)
  • Adapter for your charger if you’re traveling abroad
  • Security Control instruction card (either download from here or found in the Baha Support App)

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You also might want to schedule a quick trip to see your hearing healthcare professional before you go. Together, you can determine what adjustments, if any, need to be made to your hearing devices so you can hear effectively while on vacation.

Remember, it’s okay to walk through the airport security check wearing your Baha sound processors. The metal detectors won’t damage them. Do not place them on the conveyer belt or in the plastic bins, as that may generate static electricity. Also, you do not need to turn off your sound processors on the plane when the flight attendant tells you to turn off electronic devices, though you might need to switch them onto flight mode.

Enjoy your trip!

Read more at Healthyhearing.com

Dress bright and loud for Loud Shirt Day to show support for hearing impaired children

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Friday October 21, 2016 is Loud Shirt Day – a major annual fundraiser when people are encouraged to wear their brightest and ‘LOUDEST’ clothes to help give the gift of sound and speech to hard-of-hearing and deaf children. Loud Shirt Day was created in South Australia 16 years ago and has now spread across Australia, New Zealand and more recently into the UK and North America.

Hearing loss is the most common congenital birth defect, with 3 out of every 1000 babies born diagnosed with a hearing impairment or deafness. Early intervention is vital and benefits children’s development in speech, language and psycho-social skills.

Everyone who wants to can get involved by making a donation to the Cora Barclay Centre and showing off their best loud outfits – the brighter and more outrageous the better.

“It’s a great excuse to wear your brightest clothes and raise some much needed money”, says Cora Barclay Centre Chief Executive Officer Michael Forwood. “Or just wear something extra loud on the day and encourage others to do the same. Whether you fancy stripes, florals, polka dots or Hawaiian shirts, as long as your outfit has colour and pizzazz, it will be perfect for Loud Shirt Day.”

 

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The idea is to create awareness in a fun way.

And of course –

“DON’T forget to share photos of yourself with the hashtag #LoudShirtDay to let everyone know how easy and fun it is to be involved!” Mr Forwood emphasised.

 

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Read more on the official site: Loud Shirt Day

European report: Investing in hearing technology improves lives and saves money

Adult hearing loss is one of the most challenging health and social issues facing Europe today, leading to substantial costs for both the individual and to society.  In many countries, with increasing ageing populations and associated health costs, access to  hearing technologies may be denied, or the long-term management not provided.

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A new European Report published by The Ear Foundation, called ‘Spend to Save’, sets out to reveal  the real cost of hearing loss and how by increasing access to today’s technology across Europe, individual lives can be transformed and money saved.

Mel Gregory, Chief Executive of The Ear Foundation says:

“The evidence is now clear that the cost of NOT providing hearing technologies has been shown to be greater than the cost of providing them.”

The report recommends that funding schemes should include the full cost of hearing aids and cochlear implants, as this would ultimately save money overall for health, social care and welfare systems.

Download the report

Malcolm didn’t receive his Baha System until he was 80 years old – and it changed his life. See his story below:

Raising a child with Treacher Collins syndrome

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The 2012 children’s novel Wonder is being adapted into a Hollywood movie starring Julia Roberts.

Wonder tells the story about a 10-year boy with Treacher Collins syndrome who starts school after being home-schooled for years. Jacob Trembley plays the boy, Auggie, who gets bullied because of his rare facial medical deformity. The film is scheduled for release in April, 2017.

Treacher Collins syndrome is a rare, genetic condition affecting the way the face develops — especially the cheekbones, jaws, ears and eyelids. These differences often cause problems with breathing, swallowing, chewing, hearing and speech.

How severe the syndrome is varies widely from child to child. Treacher Collins syndrome is present when a baby is born (congenital).

The syndrome occurs in about 1 in 50,000 newborns worldwide.

Blogger Eloise, herself a parent of a child with the syndrome, shares both her concerns and hopes for the film in this blog:

Ten things about parenting a child with Treacher Collins Syndrome

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Read more: How children with Treacher Collins and hearing loss can benefit from a Baha solution