Free
Poster Session
Issue Date: July 2015
Published Online: July 01, 2015
Updated: April 30, 2020
The Effect of the Electronic Auditory Stimulation Effect Application (EASe app) With Individuals 11 to 27 Years of Age With Sensory Processing Deficits
Author Affiliations
  • Brenau University
  • Brenau University
  • Brenau University
  • Brenau University
  • Brenau University
Article Information
Complementary/Alternative Approaches / Sensory Integration and Processing / Prevention and Intervention
Poster Session   |   July 01, 2015
The Effect of the Electronic Auditory Stimulation Effect Application (EASe app) With Individuals 11 to 27 Years of Age With Sensory Processing Deficits
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, July 2015, Vol. 69, 6911515233. https://doi.org/10.5014/ajot.2015.69S1-PO7082
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, July 2015, Vol. 69, 6911515233. https://doi.org/10.5014/ajot.2015.69S1-PO7082
Abstract

Date Presented 4/18/2015

The Electronic Auditory Stimulation effect application (EASe app) is an auditory intervention aimed at improving habituation to sound. Evidence regarding changes in habituation after the EASe trial among adolescents and adults with auditory deficits is presented. These findings are compared with past research and warrant further investigation.

SIGNIFICANCE: Auditory interventions are used to improve sound sensitivities, which often improve function. The effectiveness of these interventions is inconclusive, supporting the need for further research in this area. Insufficient research exists regarding sound-based interventions for adolescent and adult populations. Difficulties with habituation to sound affect this population in a variety of aspects of daily living (e.g., attention for school or work) and in increasingly variable contexts (e.g., home and within the community). The Electronic Auditory Stimulation effect application (EASe app), purported to promote habituation to sound, was explored as an innovative, convenient, and cost-effective alternative to most auditory interventions. In this quasi-experimental study, we determined the effect of the EASe app on participants’ ability to habituate to sound and on their occupational performance with the following research questions: (1) Does using the EASe app for two 30-min sessions daily for 30 days affect participants’ ability to habituate to auditory environments as measured by changes in average EASe Intensity Quotient (EASe IQ) scores? (2) Will participants show an improvement, on average, in their occupational performance and satisfaction ratings, as measured by the Canadian Occupational Performance Measure (COPM), after using the EASe app? It was hypothesized that completion of the EASe app trial would improve, on average, an individual’s ability to habituate to auditory input for improved occupational performance.
METHOD: A convenience sample of 13 participants aged 11 to 27 yr was recruited from facilities in northeast Georgia. Participants had reported sensory processing deficits and daily access to approved headphones and an iDevice. Individuals using other auditory programs or with a physical hearing impairment were excluded. The COPM was used to rate occupational performance before and after the EASe trial. A formula was used to calculate an EASe IQ, a rating of one’s ability to habituate to music, from a summary e-mail sent after listening sessions. Qualitative data regarding participants’ experiences with the app were also collected. MegaStat for Microsoft Excel was used to run one-way analyses of variance for the difference, on average, between participants’ mean EASe IQ scores per music module. Difference-of-means, paired-treatment t tests were used to find changes, on average, between participants’ COPM scores.
RESULTS AND CONCLUSION: The research hypothesis was unsupported, and no improvement in auditory habituation was found. Further investigation of the EASe IQ resulted in strong to very strong positive correlations within music modules; as listening sessions progressed, EASe IQ scores increased, indicating gains in auditory habituation. Significant improvement in COPM scores was not found, yet most participants’ occupational performance increased. This study’s findings are similar to those of a previous EASe app study. In both studies, increases in EASe IQ scores were found within music modules; however, in this study, we found no statistical improvement in occupational performance, aligning with inconclusive research regarding auditory interventions. Limitations include whether a 30-day trial is adequate time for improvement in auditory habituation, and the EASe IQ formula did not seem to account for differences between music modules. Therefore, as participants progressed through modules, improvement might not have been accurately measured.