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Have you recently started noticing that your child tends to listen to certain words like icecream? Selective hearing is when a person tends to hear only words that they feel are important to them. This is based on how the brain prioritizes sounds. Your child’s brain reacts to hearing too many sound sources and ignores what it feels is less important.

We listen to hundreds of sounds every day. It could be the news on the television, chipping of the birds, running of the dishwasher, and your spouse talking to you. Along with all these, you suddenly hear the traffic news update to make sure you’re not stuck in traffic on your way to work.

Your brain reacts to sensory information by:

  • Filtering And Enhancing: imagine when your name is being called upon. How alert do you get?
  • Selective Perception: no matter even if you’re at your most favorite restaurant, but if you’re anxious, you will not enjoy the meal.
  • Sensory Contrast: imagine the same amount of candles lit in a dark room compared to being lit outside in the sunshine.
  • Prioritizing: you will not feel how soft your clothes are if their tag is hurting your neck.

This processing of sounds is essential and can also be very helpful. Imagine you’re working at a production plant with hundreds of sounds going around you, but you will be able to listen to what your manager has to say to ensure the work is done correctly. Another example is when a newly born cry, the mother immediately wakes up but can easily sleep through other, louder sounds.

How Can You Deal With Selective Hearing?

  • First, ensure you or the person you feel is suffering from this has undergone a hearing test by an audiologist. This will help you conclude that the patient is suffering from selective hearing, and it is not a hearing problem.
  • Try getting the person’s attention before talking to them. You could give them a gentle touch or speak out their name. You need to make sure they are not focused on another task while talking to you.
  • Make sure the conversation is short. An adult will not be attentive after six minutes if the topic is not interesting to them. And children just need one or two words, and you have their attention.
  • And the most important thing to do is when the person asks for your attention, give them your undivided attention.

If you feel you or someone in your family is suffering from selective hearing, visit Internal Medicine Diagnostic Center now, and one of our doctors will assist you. Book an appointment at 281-252-8600.

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