APD and Otitis Media

It is known that sensory deprivation of vision or hearing in infancy results in impaired development of vision or hearing.  This is because sensory stimulation is needed during critical developmental time windows for normal brain development. A lack of auditory stimulation can mean that the hearing pathways in the brain don’t develop normally.

There is some research evidence to show that prolonged otitis media (of which glue ear is a common form) can result in APD, presumably because hearing has been disrupted during important developmental periods.

Clearly not all children are significantly affected though, as otitis media is very common in childhood.