Thursday, June 20, 2013

A little information...

I am often surprised at how, even in today's time, the general population knows and understands very little about deafness and hearing loss. For those of you who read this blog and are involved in E's life, I thought it was time to provide a little information that may help you to better understand...

About 1 in 1,000 children are born deaf or hard of hearing.

90% of all deaf children are born to hearing parents.

50% of the time, no known cause can be identified.

Not every deaf person is a candidate for a cochlear implant. The cochlea and auditory nerves must be intact and that is not always the case.

Not every deaf person who IS a candidate for a cochlear implant wants one.
Cochlear implants do NOT cure deafness. They are a tool that artificially simulates hearing.

With a cochlear implant, the recipient does not hear the same way that hearing people hear. "Hearing" is an active process and takes practice and concentration to "learn" how to interpret the sound input.

Not every cochlear implant is successful in terms of providing hearing and speech. The results vary from person to person. Implantation does not automatically mean a person will "hear" or speak normally.

When the external portion of a cochlear implant is not on, the implant user is as deaf as he/she ever was. Natural hearing will not be restored.

Research shows that only about 30% of lipreading is fully comprehended. Do not assume that a deaf or hard of hearing person can just read your lips. While they probably are quite skilled at lipreading, it is not precise and errors in understanding can be serious in certain scenarios. This is why interpreters must be provided when requested (medical and legal especially!).
Being deaf is not considered a disability in the state of North Carolina.

The majority of deaf people do not consider themselves to be disabled just because they cannot hear.

The terms "deaf" or "hard of hearing" are acceptable. "Hearing Imparied" is unfortunately still commonly used among hearing people, but is not the correct term to use.

Speaking more loudly, slowly or exaggerating the movements of your mouth actually make it more difficult for someone to understand you if they are reading your lips.

There is no universal sign language. Signed languages differ from country to country just like spoken languages.

Most importantly: ASK QUESTIONS. Do not be afraid to ask questions and gain understanding. I welcome questions. I do not welcome stares and assumptions.

Friday, June 7, 2013

E is 3!

This past weekend, E turned three. I cannot believe how fast the time has flown! We booked a small party for him at our local YMCA where we have a wading pool/water park that was perfect for E and his pals.

 Pool Party Cupcakes

Serious Cupcake Destruction

 Splash Attack on Daddy!

 New Big Bed for a Big Boy

My sweet E, you are now 3 years old!
Favorite activities: playing outside and cuddling
Favorite foods: you still pretty much only eat chicken nuggets and french toast and you love chocolate milk and french fries
Favorite Book: Lama Lama Red Pajama
Favorite TV show(s): Bubble Guppies and Team Umizoomi
Favorite toys/items: Blankie, Lovey, and Mickey Mouse, a ball of any kind, and your iPad

You are still great at knowing your ABCs and you sing your ABCs all the time. You are starting to recognize and "read" some words in your books. You love to pretend to read to Mommy and Daddy. You know all of your shapes and colors and can easily count to twenty. You have a current obsession with flash lights and measuring tapes. You got a real one of each from Lowe's as one of your birthday gifts. You are a master in the art of procrastination. You come up with new ways every night to try to prolong your bedtime routine. Your most powerful trick is when you tell us you want to cuddle just a bit longer. You are so sweet and give the best kisses and hugs! You love water just like your parents. Even getting you out of the tub each night is quite a struggle. You are loved by so many and you steal hearts everywhere you go. I love you my sweet boy!