Cora had her well-child appointment this afternoon. She weighs 45 pounds, which puts her in the 78th percentile for weight, and she measured 44.5 inches tall, but she was slouching a little. I think she's closer to 46 inches. 44.5 inches puts her in the 84th percentile for height. At 4, she was in the 88th percentile for both height and weight. They also tested her vision, and it's 20/20.

The most important thing about this check up was what we learned in terms of her hearing. Her doctor used a tympanometer to determine how much her eardrum could move with the fluid in her middle ear. He knew that there was some fluid present, but it wasn't infected, and he told me that the line on the tympanometer would peak to the left if there was fluid present but her eardrum could still move, and it would flatline if there was no movement, and no movement means the middle ear is full of fluid. Both of her ears flatlined. She can hear. She's passed all of her hearing tests, but I'm sure everything sounds like she's underwater.

Our first plan of action is to try a nasal spray (Flonase) for six weeks to see if it will open up her eustachian tube. If there's still fluid when we go back for our follow-up appointment, she will get tubes.

She has been in speech since October, and there has been some improvement, but I think the improvement has come mostly from an awareness of sound misusage that was brought to her attention. I sent her speech pathologist a text after Cora's appointment, and she agreed that we should postpone further speech treatment until we get her hearing worked out. When we know that her hearing is okay, she will undoubtedly continue in speech therapy, and I'm sure her speech will improve greatly. She's going to be sad not to go to speech for a while. She loves her Kim.

It feels like such a relief to finally have the whole picture of what's going on. I knew that something was going on with her hearing, I just wasn't sure what it was because she's been passing all of her hearing tests. A few weeks ago, I was reading about hearing disorders, and that's when I read that children could continually have fluid in their middle ear that wasn't infected, and it would basically go unnoticed because it's symptomless (with the exception of speech issues that arise from not being able to hear properly). She's had many ear infections, but the infection has always cleared, even though I'm sure the fluid hasn't. It's so frustrating when my ears are plugged up. I can't imagine that being my normal. This explains so much of her voice quality and issues with volume and pitch.


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