The problem

Dyslexia, meaning “reading difficulty” was originally called “word blindness” and thought to be a visual problem. One of the earliest writers on the subject, Dr Hinshelwood, was an eye surgeon, which may account for the initial emphasis on visual difficulties. Many more recent studies point to language and auditory problems as the fundamental cause. Listening is the most basic skill required for verbal communication and a weakness in listening ability may hinder the development of a strong language base. Consequently, the child encounters problems when it comes time to approach the more complex linguistic tasks of writing and reading. If the sounds of speech have not been accurately heard, they cannot be accurately conveyed by symbols. The left hemisphere of the brain is the main centre for processing language. In order for speech sounds to reach the brain efficiently the right ear must take a leading role in listening because the right ear communicates most directly with the left hemisphere. Dr Tomatis contends that children with dyslexia have failed to achieve right ear dominance and that therefore the order in which they hear sounds becomes jumbled. If they sometimes use the left and sometimes the right ear as the directing ear, sounds may reach the brain at different speeds, so letters will be jumbled. This accounts for errors of reversal, such as writing “was” as “saw” or pronouncing “spaghetti” as “pisghetti”.

How Sound Therapy may help

The balance between the two hemispheres of the brain is of fundamental importance in overcoming dyslexia.

Both hemispheres play a role in processing language, but the roles they play are different. The eye must combine with the power and the quality of the ear to make sense of the written sounds. This co-ordination happens easily when the left hemisphere deals primarily with audition and the right hemisphere deals primarily with vision. In dyslexia, the route which allows for phonic analysis has been damaged. Sound Therapy may help restore the functioning of this route and reduce the cause of the problem. Tomatis says “We read with our ears … the ear is the organ of language, the pathway to language assimilation, the key that controls it, the receptor regulating its flow.” Sound Therapy may help stimulate and exercise the ear, encouraging it to receive and interpret sound in an efficient manner. Music is a highly organised series of sounds that the ear has to analyse. Therefore, listening to music is an excellent way for a child to learn how to perceive sounds in an organised fashion, or in other words, to listen. The higher volume of sound to the right ear, which is built into all Sound Therapy recordings, means that the right ear is encouraged to become the directing ear. When this right ear dominance is achieved, the problem of reversal will likely disappear.

The added benefits of confidence and self esteem

Children with dyslexia often have feelings of inferiority after repeated failure. It is unfair that they must try many times harder than anyone else to achieve only mediocre results. Sound Therapy may offer immediate emotional relief because it is a method of treatment that requires no extra effort from the child. A therapy that does not require the child to struggle with the problem area of language enables him or her to feel let off the hook for once and enjoy a treatment that is not a constant reminder of his or her own inadequacies. The basic cause of the language difficulties may be remedied by Sound Therapy. Once the child is able to receive and interpret sound accurately and easily, his or her ability and motivation to communicate is greatly increased. Thus the problem learner is transformed into a receptive and motivated learner.

How to use it

A child with dyslexia should listen to Sound Therapy every day for 30 to 60 minutes or more if desired. Listening can be done during sleep, play, homework or travel. If the child wishes to listen at school, parents can ask for the consent of the teacher. This will likely be granted as listening in the classroom will often help the child to concentrate and perform better. The reading aloud exercise while holding an imaginary microphone in the right hand has been particularly helpful for children with dyslexia.

Reading aloud exercise

Children who are experiencing difficulty with reading can begin this exercise after the first ten to twenty hours of listening. The child sits in an erect but comfortable posture and reads aloud while holding the right hand near the mouth, as though holding an imaginary microphone. This has the psychological effect of ‘switching on’ the voice. At the same time it encourages right ear dominance, which is necessary for the successful conversion of visual symbols into sound. This exercise should be done for fifteen minutes each day, and can be continued until the reading problems are resolved. Encourage the child by making it into a fun game. Give your child positive attention while he or she is reading and this will create a positive association with reading aloud.

Research and Media


To learn more about how Sound Therapy can help children with dyslexia, request one of our Free Reports.

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Reading without Ritalin
Judy and Gerrit Westerhof, Winnipeg:

“Our son John is in Grade 6 and showing terrific improvement in reading since beginning on the Sound Therapy tapes two months ago. He says a lot of people don’t even know he is dyslexic anymore. His teachers are amazed and thrilled, and even his friends have noticed the change in him. John came home last week and reported that two boys said, ‘Boy, John, you’re a lot smarter this year. Last year you were so dumb, but this year you’re not.’ We are so excited, because last year John was in a special program and this year he is in the regular program. He was on medication for his learning disability, but is now off the Ritalin. It makes him especially happy that he doesn’t have to take the pills anymore, as they made him sick to his stomach. He loves the baroque music, listening with his Auto-Reverse Walkman all night until the batteries run out. He hated to read before, and now when we have our evening devotions he asks to read and does it very well. It is like a miracle and he improves daily. His grandfather says it’s like an alarm went off in his head and he woke up.”

ADD calm in class
Mary Ann Scherr – Yorkton, Saskatchewan, Canada:

“My son Aaron, aged 10, was diagnosed as Attention Deficit Disorder, formally Hyperkinetic Syndrome. In December I read about Sound Therapy and the possibilities of this helping hyperactive children. We purchased the tapes at Easter, and Aaron started therapy. A week and a half later, at a teacher interview, his teacher remarked that he was so much more calm and pleasant. She said “I had my first decent religion class because Aaron didn’t butt in and interrupt. Is he on medication or what?” I confessed that Aaron had started Sound Therapy but I didn’t think it necessary to tell the teachers. “Whatever it is,” she said, “keep it up, because whatever it’s doing is helping him.” Two weeks later I asked the teacher if Aaron could listen to the tapes during school. Now he takes his Walkman to school and does his three hours in the a.m. All around, Aaron is much more relaxed with himself and with others. Because of his attitude I have been able to introduce new foods into his diet to determine which food groups he is really sensitive to. With Aaron’s new positive approach, his life can only get better.”

Better grades Mrs Joyce Saben, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada:

“Our son has been on the Sound Therapy program for two years and it has helped him to overcome his learning disabilities. He started off listening all day and all night to complete his first 300 hours. He is allowed to listen to the tapes in his classes at school. His letter grade at school has increased from a C to where he is now on the B Plus Honour roll. It happened that he was asked to give a testimony in a court case about the experience of having dyslexia, and he ended up telling the Judge all about his experience with Sound Therapy to the great interest of the Judge!”

Reports from students at St. Peter’s Vocational School, Saskatchewan, Canada:

After a few months of listening to the cassettes on portable cassette players issued by the school: Susan Stroeder:

“I enjoyed this therapy and learned to pay more attention in school. I wake up easier in the morning – my Mom doesn’t have to call me anymore. I don’t have to ask questions twice, but hear things the first time.” Kyle Bauer

“I don’t get headaches now and am much more active.” Marian Niekamp

“Don’t need as much sleep and am not tired in the mornings. My speaking is much clearer.” Keith Carroll

“It made me much more calm and relaxed.” Lyle Witt

“My right ear seems to bug me when I listen to hard rock now.” Debbie Nagy

“I’ve been listening to the Walkman for over 600 hours. I find it very relaxing. I can sleep a lot better at nights. I wake up more easily in the mornings and find myself in better moods. I don’t mind listening to it at school, and on weekends I try to get as many hours as I can. I find I can study a lot better and I’m more prepared for tests. I’m really enjoying the classical music.” Carla Gaunt

A brain-damaged, mentally handicapped teenager in Saskatoon, has been doing Sound Therapy for the past three months and loves listening to the tapes. Her parents report that there has been a great improvement in her ability to handle stress; her speech has developed and also her recall of past events.

ADHD concentration and self esteem
Liz Rayner, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia:

“I thought I would take this opportunity to thank you both for your time and effort. It is rare these days to find a business that is so prompt, giving it kind.

My son Jason, has benefited greatly from the use of the Sound Therapy tapes and the nutritional supplements for his ADHD. Jason listens to the tapes mainly at night and has never complained or not wanted to listen to them. He settles a lot easier and quicker within 10mins. Then there is the ‘miracle of the supplements for the ear and brain. I say miracle because Jason’s behaviour was of great concern and stress for our family. If I had not seen the differences in my child, I would have thought that this was a gimmick. However, it’s not. My son is less aggressive, calmer, less fidgety, able to concentrate better and more centred.

His behaviour in the school classroom has improved immensely and his schoolwork is steadily improving along with his self-esteem and confidence.

It is evident through the positive changes my son has experienced that even after a short period of using the tapes and natural ADHD remedy (2months) it is beneficial.

My husband and I send you a heartfelt thankyou for all your help and time. Words cannot express the relief and gratitude we feel with finally finding a natural solution for our son.”

Autism – learning to read
Felisa Mendiola, Philippines:

“It has been almost 4 years now since you sent us your Sound Therapy kit (for my autistic son, Ramon Victorino.) Although we can hardly quantify the results brought about by this Sound Therapy, my son who is now 9 years old is beginning to read. Again, thank you so much. Know that your help will always be remembered.”

Reports from students at Quaama public school, New South Wales, Australia:

9 yo girl: “I can play handball better now. I can read properly. It helps me think properly. I feel free inside. My stomach’s not tied up in knots any more. Julia, Julia, I can tell the time now!”

9 yo girl: “It doesn’t sound like I’m under water all the time anymore.”

10 yo girl: “It reduces anxiety and stress before swimming carnivals and overnight excursions.”

10 yo girl: Feels much more confident. Participated in talent quest for the first time.

12 yo boy: Settled him down. He had had some nightmares since his grandmother passed away a few months earlier. After a few weeks was able to talk about his grandmother. It was a great relief.

Severe Speech Dyspraxia
Janice, mother of a child with Dyspraxia:

“My son Jamie was diagnosed, at age three, as having “Severe Speech Dyspraxia.” This disorder, I was told, would mean years of intensive speech therapy. I started Jamie on Sound Therapy and found after a short time his progress with his speech therapy increased. Jamie used Sound Therapy for three months and continued speech therapy for another year. I firmly believe that without the Sound Therapy his progress would have been much slower.”

A D H D – 90% improvement
Annette Imms, New Zealand:

“I would like to express my heartfelt gratitude for ever to my Mum, my sister, Lesley Best (Sound Therapy Distributor) and friends for your countless hours of listening, offering advice, and amazing gift of caring. I love and thank you all.

I am married with two children, Sarah age 11 and Cayden age 7. When Sarah was 6 yrs old, she was diagnosed with ADHD. At this time, I had no knowledge of any other children with ADHD and felt very alone in our journey. My husband and I began to work with teachers, search for HELP regarding diet info, natural products and counselling. We have had a bumpy 4 years together, and at times almost not together (If you know what I mean). One and a half years later after trying several herbal products including omega 3 oils, we decided to trial Ritalin. While Ritalin has helped Sarah to have the ability to concentrate, learn in the school environment, and achieve above average reading, readable writing and above average maths, I have never been at ease with it. The guilt of having your beautiful, fun loving, creative daughter on psychiatric drugs daily has been heavy on our hearts and minds. I am not against Ritalin; I’m not saying that it’s wrong; I’m saying that it’s hard. I have been longing for the right solution, for us. I must say that we have also tried dietary changes and are now focusing mainly on synthetic sugars, colour, dairy and preservatives. A naturopath helped us the most with this. I know this sounds impossible however I find small steps best, so we do our best to keep all of these things at an absolute minimum. I now know that Sarah is an Indigo child and her vibrant personality and creativity are some of her unique strengths and she will achieve her own goals.

Sarah is 11 now and about two months ago Lesley told me about Sound Therapy. Like everything we have tried, I spoke to Sarah about it and we decided together that she would try it. WOW!!!!! Sarah listens to her tapes at bedtime and falls asleep listening to them. We noticed within weeks that her hyper times had become less and she was a much more pleasant person to be around in the mornings and evenings (outside Ritalin hours). Now that Sarah had listened for at least 100 hours, we took her off her Ritalin. Before sound therapy, 5 days without Ritalin would make for an explosive, stressful and upsetting household for all. Sarah would become excessively emotional and at times uncontrollable. Well, it’s been 10 days and Sarah is 90% better. She has very “normal” moments of conflict and upset. She is eating more and I am enjoying her bubbly personality more frequently. I say to you, if you are looking for information, guidance and help with any of your family or yourself, I’m here to tell you first hand that this has worked for us.”

Longer sentences
Mrs. Marjorie Karpan, Keneston, Saskatchewan, Canada:

“I have noticed a remarkable change in my child’s speech. The results were tremendous. The child is speaking in longer sentences, with more detail in speech. I am convinced that Sound Therapy really WORKS!”

ADHD calm and mellow
Brandy Graham – Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada

“My five year old son, Quannah, has always been very hyperactive with an energy that just bounces off the walls. He also showed a lot of anger. I obtained the Sound Therapy story tapes, and let him listen to these for an hour or so each day – letting him feel it was a privilege, and in no way forcing the therapy on him. In about two weeks there was a noticeable change in his behaviour. He became very quiet and calm, and somehow mellow – and he also seemed much happier. When he contracted the measles, I let him have the Walkman and the stories to listen to in bed, and there was great improvement in his sleep pattern. Some time later, when he caught an ear infection at a public swimming pool, and was in a lot of pain and distress, I again played the story tapes for him, and the pain went out of his ears. I’m sure the Sound Therapy was responsible for his rapid healing.”

Dyslexia – getting smarter!
Pat Engbers, RN – Victoria, British Columbia, Canada:

“My son, Marty, was diagnosed as dyslexic and has had special education since Grade 1. He started using the Sound Therapy tapes during Grade 8. School authorities, counsellors and special education teachers, on evaluating Marty after the first Grade 8 term, were all of the opinion that he would be unable to complete the grade because of his problems (lack of reading comprehension, inattention, short-term memory difficulties). However, we were able to persuade them to keep him in his present school and to give the tapes a chance to work. Marty used the tapes overnight, every night for nine months, and he himself reported improved hearing and concentration after about three weeks. The best news of all came after six weeks when he came home from school very excitedly and said, “you know, those tapes are making me smarter! I was half way through an essay this morning and realised that I had actually heard and understood the teacher. I knew the answers and it was easy to write them down!” From then on, even though Marty never became a scholar, his previously strained expression grew happy and relaxed. His ability to deal with Math and English improved greatly. He left school after Grade 10, and is now working at a full-time job and has no trouble at all with the math and language skills he needs. I should add that our other son, David, also used the tapes, for improved concentration and memory. After a few weeks we noticed that his very bent back had straightened right up – and has stayed that way.”

Better sleep no nightmares
Helen Hill – Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada

“Our eleven year old son reports that he “never slept better in his whole life.” He had been troubled with terrible nightmares. He now will not part with, nor go to bed without Tape # 1 in your program. Thank you so much.”

Brain damage
Mrs Joe Bentley

“Our daughter had a bicycle accident last spring, smashed her head on the pavement, and had two fractures to the head as well as brain concussion. The diagnosis was that she would never speak, walk, or have a memory. A friend sent her the first four Sound Therapy tapes, and she gradually learned to listen to them. She enjoys the music, as she is a pianist, and at the end of five weeks she could play the piano and read music, though she couldn’t yet read a book. I read the Sound Therapy book to her. Now six months later, she can read slowly, and can do everything except communicate fully. I am sending for another tape, as they have done so much for her. We thank you for all the help you have given our daughter.”

Posture picks up
Maureen Boyko, Watson, Saskatchewan, Canada:

“Our son, Mitch, is going to St. Peter’s Pre Vocational Centre in Muenster. He has been listening to Sound Therapy tapes on an Auto-Reverse Walkman in school since he started there in Sept. of 84, and we’ve had them at home since our purchase in April 85, two months ago. Sister Miriam, one of Mitch’s teachers and also principal of the school, said she has noticed a real change in Mitch in the final two months of the school year. My husband and I have noticed a real difference as well. His posture has improved. He used to walk really slouched. We’re not reminding him to stand straight nearly as often. He is more relaxed; he speaks out more clearly and more often. He used to speak so softly and did not articulate his words clearly. He feels that he has much better sleep, listening to the tapes. And last but not least he has developed a real appreciation of classical music.”

Senses get clearer
Larissa Amy, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia:

“Larissa Amy was diagnosed with ADD and Higher Functioning Autism. This is her response to Sound Therapy in her own words at age 13.

“My pain is not as sharp and my sleep is less. The colours are beautiful. They stand out heaps and are richer and brighter. Reading – there are more gaps in between the letters. They stand out even more. This has helped a lot for me. Life is so much easier now. But of course I feel like a new person. The world has changed a lot.”

Hearing impaired children
Donalda Alder, Long Beach, CA, U.S.A.

“The children’s poetry tape has been a Godsend for my hearing impaired students. They love it! Their attention spans have increased dramatically since they have been listening regularly to the tape. My one very hyperactive youngster has settled down to her schoolwork because she knows she can listen to the tape as soon as she’s finished. The tape has become a reward!

It’s amazing to me that for the 35 years that I have been teaching hearing impaired children, this is the first auditory training tape that uses only speech to which the children can listen comfortably. Patricia’s speech is articulate and soothing. You have chosen the poems carefully so that they are amusing and hold the children’s interest as well.”

Reba F. Adams, RN – Dallas, Texas, USA:

“The psychiatrist told me, “Your daughter is a schizophrenic and always will be.” At the age of sixteen she underwent a complete personality change as a result of a severe hypoglycaemic attack, and a fall in which she struck her forehead on a file cabinet. From being active and popular, with a wonderful sense of humour, she became irritable and suspicious, dropped her friends and became a regular recluse. She would not talk on the phone nor eat at the table, but took her meals to her room to eat behind closed doors. Her co-ordination was poor, very mechanical, like a doll. She became unable to sleep and would go days without even an hour’s sleep. That was ten years ago. She has been doing Sound Therapy for six months and is better in so many ways I hardly know where to begin. She will initiate conversations again, and occasionally I hear her deep joyous laughter that I have missed so much these past years. She is calmer, and has obtained her driver’s licence, she has started work on her education, with the assistance of a tutor provided through a special program, and she wears a Walkman to class. The Walkman is worn from the time she gets up until bedtime every day. She has come so far that I really cannot say enough about this wonderful therapy.”

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