Joshua’s hearing loss was picked up through the newborn screening test at just one day old. With only one in 1000 children diagnosed with permanent hearing loss, we assumed this would just be fluid.

Six weeks later we had further tests through audiology who started weeks of extensive testing, and to our disbelief Joshua was diagnosed with a mild/moderate Sensorineural hearing loss. Those early months passed by in a blur; trying to adjust to being new parents, as well as digesting all this new information. We spent the first few months getting second opinions, discussing options for technology, and getting to grips with Josh’s diagnosis, as well as lots of tests trying to source the reason why Joshua was born with a hearing loss. This was, and still is, inconclusive.

Four months after his diagnosis Joshua was fitted with hearing aids, a recommendation from a consultant at Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH), and we finally felt like we were moving forward.

In the winter months Joshua’s hearing deteriorated, he was later diagnosed with glue ear which brought his hearing levels down to a severe level of hearing loss for several months of the year, which had a huge impact on his speech.

As Joshua was so young, we were advised to wait until Josh was at least two years of age before they could operate. After a few years of fluctuating hearing levels, Joshua was given grommets at GOSH in January of this year, age two and a half, we saw a dramatic improvement in his language, but also his behaviour. We didn’t realise what a huge impact the glue had on the way he behaved, largely due to his frustration. 

The National Deaf Children’s Society was a pivotal source of information in those early years, and it was because of them that we found out about Auditory Verbal therapy. Joshua started therapy from just over a year old. My mum had sent me a promotional video from AVUK’s website, and I couldn’t believe how well all the children were speaking, and I just knew we had to get in contact with them. Each session was incredibly well organised, and throughout the programme both Emma and Estelle provided regular assessments, so we were able to monitor Joshua’s progress.

Auditory Verbal therapy has not only provided Joshua with the ability to communicate at the standard of a normal hearing child, but its also given us the confidence and reassurance as a family that Joshua has been given an excellent foundation in both his speech and language development.

- Joshua's parents, Jade and Brett (pictured above with Joshua)