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Deafness and Autism
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Deafness and Autism

Does anyone have any experience with children with autism who are also deaf or hearing impaired.  I am looking for any bit of information on this topic.
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470168_tn?1237474845
I think you posted this question before, so I presume you got no information.  
I don't know about the combination of these diagnosis, but I have come across the fact that those with autism also show similar behaviour to those who are blind and deaf, known as deafisms and blindisms.  That is one of the things that sparked the whole debate over 'what is an autistic persons sensory perception', and are those with autism infact 'deaf' or 'blind' in some way.  
There has also been alot of success in supporting those with autism in the same way that those who are deaf or blind are supported.  So in some way, although the person is not deaf, they behave and even acquire certain speech characteristics as a deaf/blind person would.  
Therefore it has been suggested that one of the best school environments for an autistic child might be in a school for the deaf or blind and not necessarily a special or mainstream school.
Donna Williams (she is autistic) also noted when she visited a school for the blind that she explored her environment in the same way that the blind children did with touching and tapping and smelling etc. And although Donna Williams is not blind, she does have Irlen Syndrome and wears the tinted lenses.  And having worn the lenses she said that that was the first time that she could visually see things intact rather than separate pieces of visual information that did not make sense or relate to eachother.
It is also true that alot of children/adults on the spectrum learn through multi sensory learning.  So they tend to need to use a number and combination of senses to learn something, which would indicate that the information they receive and process through any one sense is not reliable for them.
I don't suppose that answers your question.  But it might send you off on a worthwhile tangent!
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401219_tn?1205883081
You have a good memory.  I did post this question before.  The results of epircally based research I have come across only says there is a need for more research.  This is very frustrasting because I teach a child with both of these conditions.  It is important to me to reach out to any resource I can find to better serve my students and although I feel I am serving him well and he is making progress, this is such a rare condition and I believe I should be looking for as much information as possible.
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I think you may find that the supports and strategies that you would use for either condition are the same.  But that maybe from a sensory point of view you might have more sensory seeking behaviour rather than sensory avoidance.Out of interest what is his sensory system like.  Does he appear over or under sensitive in any of his senses?  
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Avatar_f_tn
It is by comparing the development of normal infants to those with autism that subtle differences can be shown. If we look at a six month old infant we would expect to see the child smiling and reacting to their parents presence. By the age of nine months the same child would reciprocate their parents smile.By the time the child reached one year old we would expect it to be babbling and pointing to objects that attracted it's attention.At sixteen months a child can usually use single words and by the age of 2 years should be able to use two word phrases.

If we compare these observations to the autistic child we find that at the age of 6 months the child does not smile or react when a parent is present. They seem unable to recognise familiar voices.By the age of nine months there is no emotion or reaction shown to parents smiling at the child.Usually at the age of one year the autistic child does not babble or seem to show interest in people or objects around them.There seems to be no interest in learning or simple tasks such as copying the movements of others eg. waving or clapping hands.
As the child gets older the signs and symptoms become more obvious
God Bless All
Sneh
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470168_tn?1237474845
Your post was very useful.  But I wanted to add that sometimes it is not that easy to spot.  My son is diagnosed as being on the spectrum yet he smiled and smiled back at me when I smiled.  He was saying two word combinations by 2 years and he points to things and brings things to show me.  He didn't learn to say hello or wave goodbye until he was 6+.  It was as if he developed typically, and then didn't seem to make any real progress for 2-3 years and therefore his behaviour become inappropriate.  
He definately is on the spectrum.  But there is a range from totally obvious autistic behaviour, to really very subtle differences that are quite hard to spot.  Every child is different.  But I agree with you that parents need to watching their child's development.
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Avatar_f_tn
Thank you Sally.I just hope We all can give the best life to them.
God Bless all the Wonderful Kids
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401219_tn?1205883081
Medical testing was able to diagnose him (at separate times) with deafness and then autism.  Unfortunately, there is not much research in these conditions co-existing.  Using the methodologies of Applied Behavior Analysis has been extremely useful.  I am looking for anyone who has experienced a child like this as a Parent, Teacher, OT, PT, Speech Therapist, Behavior Analyst, Hearing Specialist or anyone else who knows a child with the condition.
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Avatar_m_tn
Hi
My son has the same diagnoses you discribe earlier with cochlear implant in one year. He is 4 1/2 year old now. Same problem,,no sign of hearing.  I am wondering if you found out more about kids with deaf/autism?  I still haven't found anyone who can understand me or my son's issues...They are all more worried about their getting more appoinments/ time.  Very frustrated now, don't know who to trust and who to ask for help.  Please feel free to let me know if you have some info.
thank you.
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