Mark is an average eight year old boy in studying in an exclusive Filipino – Chinese boys’ school. His mom brought him to us because Mark complained about noises bothering him. His mom didn’t believe him initially and decided to come see us.
Mom was concerned about Mark’s grades. Mark had been doing poorly in school and didn’t seem to be able to well on quizzes and tests. At one point, Mark got a horrendously low grade in Math. Mom confronted him about his grades.
Mark ended up telling him Mom that he was distracted in school. The sound of the parrots at the ground floor of the school bothered him . Mom found this hard to believe as Mark’s classroom was on the third floor. How could parrots bother him so much?
Upon evaluation,we discovered that Mark had a prior history of ear infections and allergies to dairy. He had an issue with concentration and was easily distracted. He could hear sounds more loudly than others. He had fears of certain things like being all alone in a room as he could hear noises at night. He was awkward and uncoordinated.
Although he studied harder than most students, he had poor test scores. His mom felt that the tests scores didn’t accurately reflect what he really knew. Mark had problems with listening skills. He had issues with math. He was hyperactive and had a tendency to shut down under pressure.
Mom didn’t realize that Mark was really hypersensitive to sound until she started answering the checklist. She began to realize why Mark seemed to have unusual reactions to fireworks and movies. Outwardly, Mark had never shown signs of obvious hypersensitivity. He would complain about being distracted by noises. He would cover his ears only when the sounds are really loud.
When school ended, Mark’s mom had him go through the AIT program in 12 days Mark was behaved and very cooperative. Throughout the sessions, he would ask about his “superhearing”. I would tell him that once the program was done his “superhearing would be a little better”.
True enough, on the last day of AIT , we checked on Mark’s progress with his hypersensitivity. It had lessened to a degree that the sounds no longer bothered him that much.
During a follow-up with his Mom after a few months, Mark’s mom told us that Mark’s studying time had been cut down from 2 hours to an 1 hour. His grades were doing well. He was also able to focus in class better.
Mark’s a happier boy now that he’s lost his “superhearing”. He proudly tells his mom from “ Superhero to ZERO”.
Over the years, we’ve met a lot of proactive mothers. I’m proud to say that Mark’s mom is probably one of the most proactive mothers we’ve ever met. She was able to pinpoint her son’s problem and find the right therapy to address her son’s issues. Mark is truly lucky.
If his hypersensitivity had not been addressed , Mark probably would not be enjoying his school life today. He would be stressed out trying to concentrate on his studies. He would still be exerting twice the effort to study compared to his other classmates who did not have any issues with hypersensitivity.