Hearing Loss in Children
If your child has been diagnosed with hearing loss – or if you’re concerned that there might be a hearing problem – you’re not alone. At least 1.4 million children (age 18 or younger) have hearing problems*. Ear infection (otitis media) is the most common cause of hearing loss in young children.
Common signs of hearing loss in children**:Hearing ability
A family member or teacher is concerned regarding:
Delays or differences in speech and language development
Attention or behavioral difficulties
Inappropriate, delayed, or lack of response to soft and moderate-level sounds
Says "what?" or "huh?" frequently
Intently watching the faces of speakers
Difficulty understanding speech in noisy environments
Sitting close to the TV set when the volume is adequate for others; increasing the TV or music player volume to very loud levels
Not responding to voices over the telephone or switching ears continually when talking on the phone
Not startled by intense sounds
Unable to locate the source of a sound accurately
Read more signs and symptoms from American Academy of Pediatrics>>
Early Intervention is Critical
Experts agree that hearing is critical to speech and language development, communication and learning. When a child has hearing loss, early intervention is critical. Even a few months can be a major delay in the rapidly changing brain of a child. Studies show that early intervention helps improve language development, increase academic success and increase lifetime opportunities. All newborns should be screened for hearing loss by one month of age. If at any time your child is not reaching developmental milestones, consult your pediatrician or a pediatric hearing professional
Teen Hearing Loss on the Rise
One in five American teenagers now suffers from some type of hearing loss, an increase of 31% since the mid-'90s, new research shows***.
Go just about anywhere these days and you’ll see kids with personal music players plugged into their ears. Unfortunately, kids don’t always know how to choose safe sound levels. That also goes for recreational activities like video game arcades, concerts and other loud activities. Excessive noise may be creating the next generation of hearing aid users. The National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCH)/National Institutes of Health sponsors a website called Noisy Planet to help parents and kids learn how to protect their valuable hearing.
Leave Hearing-Aid.com to visit Noisy Planet>>
*Kochkin,S. (2011). Prevalence of Hearing Loss. Better Hearing Institute, Washington, DC
**Gravel, J. (2005). Hearing Solutions - A Guide to Your Child's Hearing. Better Hearing Institute, www.betterhearing.org
***Szabo, L. (2010). Hearing Loss Hits 1 in 5 U.S. Teens. USA Today www.usatoday.com, 8/17/2010.