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Have you ever wondered how our ears and brain work together to understand the sounds around us? Or why some people are really bothered by loud noises or loud places? Well, that’s what we’re diving into today! We’ll chat about auditory processing, how it affects our brain balance, and its connection to Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD). So, buckle up as we explore how our early movements play a role in our listening skills.

Why Auditory Processing is Important

Let’s start with the basics. Auditory processing is an important part of how our brain makes sense of the sounds we hear. It’s not just about hearing; it’s about understanding what we hear, whether it’s someone talking to us, music playing, or birds chirping outside. When auditory processing doesn’t work as smoothly as it should, it can make things like learning new words, following instructions, or even chatting with friends a bit tricky.

Imagine sitting in a crowded classroom, trying to focus on what your teacher is saying, but all you can hear is the noise of pencils scratching on paper and chairs scraping against the floor. That’s what it can feel like for someone with auditory processing challenges. Everyday sounds that most people can easily filter out become overwhelming and distracting, making it hard to concentrate and learn.

Auditory Challenges and Our Early Moves

Why do some people struggle with auditory learning while others don’t? Well, it turns out that our early experiences and movements play a big role. When we’re babies, our brains are like sponges, soaking up all the information around us. As we learn to crawl, reach, and explore our environment, our brain is busy making connections and laying down the foundations for how we process sensory information, including sound.

Cool, right? Research suggests that some people who struggle with auditory learning also tend to have trouble with certain reflexes that babies typically grow out of. These reflexes are like little automatic actions that help babies survive and develop, but sometimes they stick around longer than they should.

Now, imagine if those early movements didn’t happen. Maybe you skipped crawling altogether and went straight to walking, or perhaps you had a little trouble coordinating your movements. These seemingly minor differences in our early development can actually have a big impact on how our brain processes sensory information later on.

How Our Early Moves Affect Listening

One reflex that is very commonly retained is called the Moro reflex, or the “startle reflex.” You know when you’re suddenly surprised by a loud noise, and your arms shoot up? That’s the Moro reflex in action! In most kids, this reflex goes away after a few months, but for some, it sticks around. And when it does, it can make them extra sensitive to loud noises and have trouble focusing on the sounds that really matter (at any age). 

When we’re crawling, we’re developing a part of the brain called the midbrain. The midbrain acts as a filter for the rest of the brain, teling our cortex (our logical brain) what is important now and what can wait for later. See how that plays into auditory processing? If your midbrain doesn’t know how to prioritize all the incoming sounds, it hears them all at the same volume! How is our brain supposed to focus if all that is going on?

Beyond the Moro reflex, there are other primitive reflexes that can affect how we process auditory information. For instance, the Asymmetrical Tonic Neck Reflex (ATNR) is active when babies turn their heads to one side, extending the arm on that side and flexing the opposite arm. If this reflex persists beyond infancy, it can interfere with tasks like reading, writing, and listening, as it may cause involuntary movements that disrupt concentration.

Another reflex, the Spinal Galant Reflex, emerges during childbirth and is associated with the movements of the spine. When stimulated, it causes the hip on the same side to swing outward. However, if this reflex persists, it may lead to challenges in sitting still and paying attention, impacting one’s ability to focus on auditory input without being distracted by bodily movements.

Changing Our Brain for the Better

Now, here’s the exciting part: our brain is super adaptable! Neuroplasticity tells us that our brain can change the way it’s connected at any age. It’s like a muscle that can get stronger with the right exercises. 

You see, when you’re a baby, all the little movements you do are helping shape your brain connections: you’re developing the primitive brain, you’re integrating the primitive reflexes, you’re connecting left and right hemispheres, you’re helping your eyes understand how to work with the brain! 
So, even if auditory processing feels tough right now, there’s hope! Through programs like the In the Cortex that focus on rewiring our brain, we can improve how we process sounds and make listening easier and more enjoyable.

Say Hello to the In the Cortex Brain Reorganization Program

One program that’s making waves in this field is the In the Cortex Brain Reorganization Program. It’s like a gym for your brain, but instead of lifting weights, you’re doing exercises that help your brain make more efficient connections. By targeting those retained primitive reflexes and giving your brain a little workout, you can make big strides in how you listen and learn.

And you know how it’s all done? By re-creating all those movements you might have missed as a baby. That’s the most effective way to give your brain the proper foundation it needs to operate efficiently and logically, without your primitive brain getting in the way. 

The program works like this: 

  • Totally online
  • Self-guided
  • Videos, audios, and text explanations to guide you through the process od brain reorganization
  • Movement videos that show you the movements you need to do to reorganize your brain
  • Two Cortex Chats per month on Zoom with the founders of ITC
  • Access to our exclusive Facebook and WhatsApp communities
  • Lifetime access to all of it!

So, there you have it! Auditory processing might seem like a mystery, but it’s all about how our brain and ears team up to make sense of the world around us. And if you or someone you know is struggling with auditory challenges, don’t worry! There are programs like the In the Cortex Brain Reorganization Program that can help. Take the first step towards clearer listening and a brighter future today!