Kylie and Dalio describe their seven-year-old daughter, Elyse as having a lovable, funny and cheeky persona that people warm to instantly. This bubbly nature and loud personality are qualities that they adore about their daughter. They were also the same qualities that meant Elyse’s hearing problems went undetected for years.
Although Kylie wasn’t 100 per cent sure, she had an inkling something wasn’t quite right with Elyse’s hearing; it was noticing that Elyse was mispronouncing words, especially those starting with an ‘h’ sound, (which is a low sound for the human ear to detect) that made her take notice. “She wasn’t developing as her older sibling, Abbey, had done previously,” Kylie told Mamamia. “I had a faint suspicion that perhaps Elyse had a hearing loss.”
“I remember speaking to Elyse and having to repeat everything three times,” she said.
“I would say, “Put your shoes on”, in a normal tone but with no response from Elyse I’d ask again louder. By the third time, I’d be raising me voice!”
But it wasn’t until they tried an App, Sound Scouts, specifically created to detect hearing problems in children that Kylie’s suspicions were confirmed.
Sound Scouts is a mobile game technology that tests children’s hearing but does it as part of a fun, interactive game that children enjoy, without kids even realising they are having their hearing tested.
Once Elyse has completed the test, she was shown to have hearing issues but despite Kylie’s inkling, this news still came as a shock. "I felt so guilty that I hadn't picked up on her having hearing issues sooner. We just thought she had a loud personality, we didn’t realise she couldn’t hear properly.”
Once a diagnosis was made, Elyse was then referred to Australian Hearing where audiologists performed further assessments and confirmed that Elyse had a mild conductive hearing loss, which is caused by a blockage or damage in the outer and/or middle ear. After a visit to an Ear Nose Throat specialist, Elyse was diagnosed with Glue Ear and a month following this diagnosis, her ears were fitted with grommets and her hearing improved. “Hearing is very important, so having my grommets meant the world to me,” Elyse said.
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