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Children Who are Deaf and Hard of Hearing with an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD).

Assessment and intervention for ASD can require adapting or modifying the usual approaches to suit the needs of deaf and hard of hearing children.

What is this information piece about?

Deaf and hard of hearing children have higher rates of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and they are diagnosed later than other children, especially if their hearing loss is mild. Delayed diagnosis and intervention can result in poorer outcomes.

This piece prepared by Christie Yoshinaga-Itano, Ph.D. and Deborah Mood, P.h.D., explores the specific challenges with screening and diagnosis of ASD in children who are deaf or hard of hearing. Even if a deaf or hard of hearing child passes screening measures, if they present with red flags for ASD, referral for ASD assessment is recommended.

What were the key findings in this piece?

  • A dual diagnosis of ASD for deaf or hard of hearing children calls for specialised intervention, especially regarding communication.
  • Communication intervention requires knowledge of both ASD and deafness.
  • It takes a team to successfully support a child who is deaf or hard of hearing with ASD.
  • There is evidence for the benefits of early intervention, including improved language and social skills and less stressed, happier families

Where can I read more about this article?

Children who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing with an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)- Webinar Slides

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