Hearing loss in children can occur for a range of reasons from genetics to ear infections to exposure to loud noise. Most children in Australia are screened for hearing loss at birth, but should have their hearing checked regularly to ensure nothing has changed. Middle ear conditions for children between the ages of 1 and 7 are especially common, more so in the cold months of the year. As many as 90% of young children suffer ear complications when they get a cold or a flu. Sometimes such problems can be picked up by the parents because of changes in behavior or reduced hearing, but in many instances middle ear disease is asymptomatic.
If the hearing had dropped as a consequence of ear infection - it may result in language developmental delays as well as behavioral issues and even balance problems. A mild hearing loss or hearing loss in just one ear may be difficult for a parent or teacher to detect, but still cause set backs to a child’s learning. A child with a mild hearing loss in both ears may miss out on 50% of what the teacher is saying. That is why it is best to have their hearing tested by a professional. Most middle ear conditions in children can be treated and hearing restored once the problem is diagnosed.
SOME SIGNS OF HEARING LOSS IN CHILDREN INCLUDE:
Not responding to his/her name
Not following directions (frequently mistaken for not paying attention or ignoring – leading to behavior issues)
No interest in class
Frequent requests to repeat what was said
Have your child's hearing tested regularly so you know they are hearing well.