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[IP] Maverick's deafness
Thank you to everyone for responding to my questions. I appreciate all of you
who are trying to find the answers for me. In response to your questions:
Maverick could hear at birth. He was born with diabetes, but because that
is so rare, the doctors thought it was a blood infection. He was treated with
gentomycin, a drug that if not given properly, can cause deafness. He first
tested hard of hearing at 15 months of age. It was in August of last year
that he was pronounced deaf. I don't believe the medicine is what caused his
deafness. While I was pregnant with Maverick, I got the "flu" and ran a high
fever for a few days. The doctors now tell me that that was the exact week
when his pancreas would have been forming, and the hairs on the nerves in his
ears. Just bad luck I guess.
Anyways, he had cochlear implant surgery done in December. We are still
getting adjusted to it. Of course, he will still need to learn sign language,
and we are doing our best.
We live in a remote area of Montana. I drive Maverick 180 miles three times a
week for therapy, but have not been able to get lessons myself. I have books,
CD Roms, etc, but have been unable to locate words associated with his
diabetes. He is too young for school, yet, so I don't quite know how to
address the mainstreaming question. He will be eligible for preschool next
year. I have met with the speech therapist that contracts with our school and
determined that she will not be suitable for Maverick. (She does not sign and
has no cochlear implant experience.) I will most likely continue driving him
to his therapies three times a week, and allow him to go to preschool for
social reasons the other two.
Also, Maverick does not do ASL. We are trying to teach him SEE. We have two
other children (4 and 1), and we would like to help all of them with their
grammar. We heard that children who use ASL have difficulties in English
courses, where as those who use SEE test similar to hearing children. SEE
will allow us to integrate sign language into our everyday conversations. Our
one year old can sign more than she can speak!
I am really thankful for the advise. I will try checking with the University
in Billings, but because of the distance, I would really like to find an
easier way. Maybe a book, or internet site.
Thanks again, Bridget
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