Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Aaah Ouuu Eeee Sssh Zzzzz Mmmm

Hannah began her speech therapy sessions at the Center for Hearing and Communication in downtown Manhattan when she was three-and-a-half months old. And we are so lucky to have Jessica as our speech and language pathologist. Our sessions are every Monday and Wednesday at 9 am and each one is an hour. The sessions begins with Jessica listening to Hannah's hearing aides with a listening tube. She chants Aaah, Oooou, Eeee, Shhhs, Zzzz, Mmmm, Railroad Hotdog and makes sure all of the vowels and constants are clear for Hannah to hear. While Hannah's hearing loss is profound, I do believe the hearing aids do help her. While her hearing level ranges in the 90-110 decibel range, the hearing aids can bump up her hearing about 50 decibels, allowing her to hear conversations. The therapy teaches Hannah how to listen. Jessica will introduce different sounds to Hannah like the bells, Hannah's favorite and a snare drum, Hannah's least favorite and many, many toys in between. Jessica plays with Hannah using the toys as a way to talk with Hannah, and introduce simple words like up, down, open, close and pop. The goal for now is for Hannah to turn to the sound. Once she knows she has to look for the sound, meaning to that sound comes next.
While an hour class for any child could seem long, Hannah was so focused and attentive for about 45 minutes of it. The rest of the time allowed me to ask Jessica questions about Hannah's hearing and ways to interact with Hannah.