After the crying subsided from the shocking news of Brennen’s 3-year check-up, I went into responsible mommy mode. I called the neurologist and secured the first available appointment, which was two months from the date of my call. I also made Brennen an appointment to get his hearing tested as that was a pre-requisite to making an appointment with a speech therapist. As a side note, finding someone to do a hearing test on a 3-year old was quite a task. His pediatrician’s office wouldn’t do it because they said kids under the age of five are too difficult to do hearing tests on. We ended up securing an appointment through the Macomb County Intermediate School District (MISD), at no cost to us.
Brennen’s hearing checked out perfectly! In fact, the audiologist tested him at a lower level then she normally would and he responded to everything! This was no surprise to the hubby or myself as Brennen is very sensitive to noise. In fact we actually have a pair of Peltor Kid’s Earmuffs that we use daily while running the vacuum, the blender etc. We even took them on vacation.
Once Brennen completed his hearing test we were able to make an appointment at our local elementary school to get his speech evaluated. Luckily, in Michigan, speech therapy is offered through the public school system and therefore speech evaluations and therapy is offered for free to kids! As you may recall, Brennen’s pediatrician thought that Brennen talked with a lisp. Interestingly, the speech therapist did not agree. However, the therapist felt that his speech was delayed and thus evaluated him with the Goldman Fristoe Test of Articulation. The test was basically a set of flash cards with a different picture on each one. The therapist would show Brennen a card and then he had to tell her what was on it. The results of the test indicated that Brennen was one year behind in his speech. The therapist noted that he had a tendency to use jargon while he talked and also deleted the final consonants in some word. The speech therapist recommended that Brennen join a group therapy session at the school that met one time per week. At this point there was only four weeks left in the school year, so Brennen would only attend four sessions.
As far as Brennen was concerned, his speech therapy class was “school.” So he was very excited to go each day and even insisted upon wearing his backpack even though there was no need for it. By the end of the four weeks the teacher told me that Brennen may not even need to return in the Fall because his speech seemed to be more clear. As much as I would like to credit the teacher for his “improvement”, I feel that he just became more comfortable in the strange environment and thus sounded clearer.