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Hearing Loss in Children


Children Hearing ServicesIt is widely understood and accepted that hearing is critical for the development of speech, language, communication skills and learning. The earlier that hearing loss occurs in the child’s life, the more serious the effect on the child’s development. Similarly, the earlier the hearing loss is identified and intervention begun, the less serious the ultimate effects.

Infants can be evaluated and fit with amplification as early as 4 weeks old. Children at this age are usually evaluated by auditory brainstem response (ABR) and by otoacoustic emission (OAE) testing. A child as young as eight to twelve months old can be evaluated by means of behavioral observation or visual reinforcement audiometry. Once a child reaches two and a half to three years of age, play audiometry can be used for evaluation. By five years of age, traditional (raise your hand) audiometry is used. Recent research indicates that children identified with hearing loss who begin services before 6 months old will develop language (spoken or signed) on par with their hearing peers.

Symptoms of Hearing Loss in Children

  • Your child is inconsistently responding to sound.Symptoms of hearing loss in children
  • Language and speech development is delayed.
  • Speech is unclear.
  • Sound is turned up on electronic equipment (radio, TV, CD or MP3 players, etc.).
  • Your child does not follow directions.
  • Your child often says “Huh?”.
  • Your child does not respond when called.

Effects of Hearing Loss in Children

Effects of hearing loss in children

  • Delays in the development of receptive and expressive communication skills
  • The language deficit causes learning problems that result in reduced academic achievement
  • Communication difficulties often lead to social isolation and poor self-concept or depression
  • It may have an impact on vocation choices


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