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“Hard-of-Hearing” 7-Year-Old

Question:

My 7-year-old acts like she cannot hear. The only time she does hear is when I yell. Her doctor conducted a hearing test and says her hearing is fine. What else can it be?

Answer:

With children, we should always check out medical causes that may be contributing to the problem before we assume that it is a behavioral problem.

First, we recommend that you make a few simple adjustments to your communication techniques:

1. Remove any distractions such as TV, radio and video games that have her attention.

2. Get on your daughter’s level so you can have eye contact.

3. Monitor your voice tone and body language. Children pay more attention to those than the words we use.

Second, monitor your overall communication with her to make certain you are praising her for the good things she is doing four times more than you are correcting her. If your child hears criticism the majority of the time you communicate with her, she will learn to “tune out” what you are saying.

You can turn this around by consciously focusing on the positive things she is doing or has done. Sometimes this alone can be a miraculous cure for “hard-of-hearing” children.
 

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