1. What is an Auditory Processing Disorder?

It is the inability to discriminate speech sounds causing weakness in auditory memory, vocabulary and/or phonics; the child’s hearing and intelligence are normal. The root problem is the inability to hear very small pieces of sound, sounds as small as 10 milliseconds (ms) in duration. Children/adults who have an Auditory Processing Disorder need a much larger piece of sound, maybe as large as 100 to 300 ms long. This is not a hearing problem; it is a processing problem. The phoneme, or speech sound, /b/ only lasts about 40 to 50 ms in duration. Vowels are much longer. They are hundreds of ms long. I recommend Auditory Processing Therapy, using the Fast ForWord program, to remediate this problem for the child who fits the criteria.

2. What is a Visual Processing Disorder?

It is the inability to analyze and interpret incoming visual information causing weakness in sustained attention, reading, mathematics, writing, visual memory and/or fatigue; the child’s visual acuity and intelligence are normal.

The root problem could be due to a problem with both eyes working together, or changing focus rapidly, or maintaining sustained focus, or smooth visual tracking of the eyes. This is not a visual acuity problem; it is a processing problem. I recommend Visual Processing Therapy designed to remediate your child’s visual processing weaknesses.

3. What is ADHD or ADD?

ADD is the inability to control behavior due to difficulty processing neural information that causes the child to have difficulty paying attention. Many children who have ADD have very similar symptoms as Auditory Processing Disorder or Visual Processing Disorder. The proper diagnosis is critical to remediation.

ADHD is a behavior disorder that some children have where they are hyperactive and have difficulty paying attention. Many children who have ADHD have very similar symptoms as Auditory Processing Disorder or Visual Processing Disorder. The proper diagnosis is critical to remediation.

If your child has been diagnosed as ADD or ADHD and you have tried medication and the child has not significantly improved, I would recommend having an Auditory & Visual Processing Screening to rule out processing disorders.

4. What is Dyslexia?

Dyslexia is when a child/adult reads or writes one or more grade levels below their peers; the child’s hearing, visual acuity and intelligence are normal. The diagnosis of dyslexia does not tell you the root cause of the problem. The problem could be the child has never been taught phonics, or the child has an Auditory or Visual Processing Disorder.

5. Do you measure my child's IQ?

No, I do not. An IQ assessment is an attempt to measure the intelligence of someone. It is difficult to get an accurate measure of an individual’s IQ if that person has a Processing Disorder.

6. My child has already had a Psychological or Psychoeducational Evaluation, why do we need to do another Evaluation?

A psychologist performs a Psychological Evaluation and he/she measures the child’s academic level compared to their IQ. I do not measure the child’s IQ; I specialize in the diagnosis and treatment of Processing Disorders.

7. What is a Developmental Coordination Disorder?

Developmental Coordination Disorder is when a child is delayed in the mastery of motor developmental milestones; the child has normal intelligence and does not have a neurological disorder. I believe the root problem is in synchronizing timing and motor movements down to milliseconds. I recommend the Timing, Concentration & Motor Processing Therapy using the Interactive Metronome program.

8. Does the school offer any of these therapies?

No, they do not.

9. Will my insurance pay for the Evaluations and/or Therapy?

Regretfully, insurance companies are more likely to pay for medications for your child rather than for remediation of processing disorders for your child. This is true even if your child is expected to be on medications for an indefinite period of time. Visual Processing Therapy, Auditory Processing Therapy and Timing, Concentration & Motor Processing Therapy last for a couple of months, not years.

For information on scholarships please visit Step Up For Students. They offer the Florida Tax Credit Scholarship, which is income based, and the Gardiner Scholarship, which is for Special Needs.

10. Why is your approach different from the average Speech Pathologist?

I firmly believe that “The proper diagnosis is critical to remediation” and I cannot in good conscience do just traditional “Speech Therapy.” I wrote out my own testimony on the web site. Please click here to read the “The Rest of the Story.”

11. Do you recommend the Lindamood-Bell program?

No, I do not. The Lindamood-Bell is a good program for establishing phonics using a multi-sensory approach, however it is an expensive program that requires the clinician to do the primary training. The work will require one hour a day, five days a week, for six months OR four hours a day, five days a week, for eight weeks. Assuming all of this work is done, the child who has an Auditory Processing Disorder or Visual Processing Disorder has not had the root problem remediated.

12. Do you tutor students who are struggling in school?

I believe it is critical to find out why is the child struggling in speech, language or learning. It is important for the child to have the tools to learn. Those tools are adequate Visual Processing, adequate Auditory Processing and adequate Motor Processing skills. But, what if the child is older and missed foundational academic skills when he/she was young. Then we are offering a program called “A Time for Phonics” to enable the child to catch up on those phonological processing rules, those spelling rules, those reading comprehension skills for those children who are still struggling.

13. Should my child stay on their current medication?

Yes, I believe you should follow your doctor’s orders.

14. Why is my child delayed in speech or language or learning skills?

Ten percent (or more) of all children struggle in speech, language or learning. We cannot always pin point the original cause of the problem in Processing Disorders, but we can improve each child’s use of the tools of Auditory Processing and Visual Processing to be a more effective learner.

15. Can my child's diet affect their learning skills?

Some children have adverse reactions to milk, wheat, yeast, artificial colors, artificial flavors, sugar, etc. Each child is unique and if the child has allergies or adverse reactions to certain foods, the parents need to be proactive in solving those problems.

16. What is the definition of Speech-language pathology services?

According to the current State of Florida statutes Title XXXII Chapter 468.1125 (7) (a):
Practice of speech-language pathology” means the application of principles, methods, and procedures for the prevention, identification, evaluation, treatment, consultation, habilitation, rehabilitation, instruction, and research, relative to the development and disorders of human communication; to related oral and pharyngeal competencies; and to behavior related to disorders of human communication. “Disorders” are defined to include any and all conditions, whether of organic or non-organic origin, that impede the normal process of human communication, including, but not limited to, disorders and related disorders of speech, phonology, articulation, fluency, voice, accent, verbal and written language and related non-oral/non-verbal forms of language, cognitive communication, auditory and visual processing, memory and comprehension, interactive communication, mastication, deglutition, and other oral, pharyngeal, and laryngeal sensory-motor competencies.