What is AIT?
Welcome to the
Vermont Center for Auditory Education
Offering the Berard Method of
Auditory Integration Training
in the beautiful mountains of Vermont
Auditory Integration Training (AIT) is an educational intervention designed to reduce auditory sensitivity and distortions, and to improve the quality of auditory processing. Developed by Dr. Guy Berard of France, AIT retrains a disorganized auditory system and allows more efficient processing of information. It encourages the ears to work together in a coordinated manner and can improve the ability to comprehend what is being said or read; to follow directions; or to express thoughts and feelings in words. Dr. Berard has found that auditory processing problems are often factors that contribute to disorders such as learning disabilities, attention deficit, dyslexia, ADD/ADHD, autism, PDD, CAPD, depression, speech problems and more. Through a non-invasive process that takes only 10 days to complete, the auditory system can be reorganized and improvements can be seen in many different areas.
History of AIT
Auditory Integration Training has been in use for over 30 years. Dr. Guy Berard (ENT) spent many years researching how to retrain the ear to hear more accurately and found that hearing has a more important role in a person's life than he had realized. Or, as he put it in his book of the same title, Hearing Equals Behavior. His practice soon included clients with learning disabilities and depression as well as those with traditional hearing problems. This eventually expanded to include autistic clients as well. After Annabel Stehli published her book, The Sound of a Miracle, describing his work and its positive effect on her autistic daughter Georgiana, interest in this application of AIT increased. Research supported the efficacy of AIT and practitioners began to train with Dr. Berard so that AIT could be offered in the United States and elsewhere.
Is AIT For You?
There is no one way to judge if AIT is needed for every person. It can have effects on the sensory/auditory system, learning, emotional and/or behavioral issues. Many of these issues are present in people who are considered to have autism, dyslexia, pervasive developmental disorder, central auditory processing disorder, Asperger's syndrome, or ADD/ADHD. Here are some signs that may indicate that AIT will be helpful for your child, or you.
- Sensitivity to sounds; reacting to loud sounds as if causing pain or noticing faint sounds that others do not.
- Inconsistent responses to sounds; behaving as if cannot hear at times but normally at others; fearfulness or discomfort in response to specific sounds but not others.
- Speech and language problems; expressive and comprehensive
- Poor recall of auditory information; poor ability to follow auditory instructions or to remember spoken information
- Vestibular hyper- and/or hypo-sensitivity; extremes in perception of the body in the environment; may be more or less coordinated than is average for age; may engage in activities like spinning, rocking or swinging.
- Tactile hyper- and/or hypo-sensitivity; extremes in perception of touch; may have a very high or low pain threshold; may be irritated by seams in clothes or the texture of materials; may not notice pressure that is great enough to bruise.
- Poor and/or variable academic performance
- Reading and spelling problems, including dyslexia
- Poor sequencing skills
- Poor comprehension of material, especially when delivered verbally
- Difficulty in language classes, native as well as foreign
- Poor handwriting
- Cognitive fatigue
- Anxiety and/or depression
- Emotional withdrawal; lack of affect; no communication of feelings
- Poor self-esteem and/or self-confidence
- Difficulty understanding social cues
- Inappropriate affect and social interactions
- Inappropriate vocal intensity
- Avoids eye contact, physical contact
- Impulsive and/or restless
- Poor self regulation
- Irritability, temper tantrums, lethargy, fatigue
Poor sleep patterns
A note to adults:
More children than adults receive AIT; this has had a lot to do with the awareness raised by Annabel Stehli's books and the research of Dr. Bernard Rimland at the Autism Research Institute. And the simple fact that parents will leave no stone unturned when it comes to helping their children! But this doesn't mean that Auditory Integration Training is only effective for younger ears and minds. Frequently, by the time one has grown up, a person has learned to "cope" with his or her problems and doesn't even notice them much of the time. But addressing poor auditory processing as an adult can have the same profound effects as it does for a child. You won't have school reports and tests to show the changes, but you may notice increased comfort in social situations; less fatigue; improved communication abilities and the subsequent improvement in both personal and business relations that come with it; less discomfort from auditory irritation; more physical, mental and emotional comfort, including less depression; and increased ability to focus - even with alot of background noise.
Nutrition of course plays an important roal in all aspects of human development, even providing fast migraine relief. A one hour consultation is included in all programs and is also available and often recommended 3-6 months before starting a program. We have an experienced nutritional consultant and clinical herbalist on staff, please contact us for more information and to schedule appointments.
|"Everything happens as if human behavior were largely conditioned by the manner in which one hears."
-Dr. Guy Berard
|".auditory training has taken hold in the United States and Canada. Now there are many "Georgies," children who were once labelled autistic and who are now living normal, happy lives."