A child’s ability to hear impacts so many other things, including cognitive skills and later performance in school. Hearing screenings are performed on newborns, which can detect congenital problems such as deafness.
An estimated 1 to 3 children per 1,000 have hearing loss. Every state in the United States participates in the Early Hearing Detection and Intervention (EHDI) program, and all babies born in the hospital routinely receive screening tests. If your child was born in a birthing center or at home, it’s essential to have this test performed within the first three weeks.
However, even a child who had normal hearing at birth can develop hearing problems as they grow. It’s important to get a hearing screening at Penguin Pediatrics and to look for signs that your child could have a hearing problem.
Some of the causes of hearing problems in children include:
Regardless of the possible cause, it’s important to seek early intervention as soon as you notice a sign of a problem. Early intervention can help prevent learning delays, social problems, and communication difficulties.
In infants, signs of hearing problems are often subtle. As your child’s hearing develops, you should expect the following behaviors:
If your baby doesn’t achieve these hearing milestones or seems to hear some sounds but not others, schedule a screening with your pediatrician.
In older children, including toddlers, the signs of hearing problems are a bit different. They may include:
Early medical intervention is the most important step in protecting your child’s hearing. If the Penguin Pediatrics team detects that your child has any problems with hearing, we can refer you to a specialist. Depending on the suspected cause, this specialist may be an ear, nose, and throat (ENT) doctor or an audiologist.
Aside from medical screening, you can do other things to protect your child’s hearing, regardless of whether a hearing problem already exists. Monitor your child’s use of headphones, avoid exposing them to loud noises or environments, and keep track of the volume on electronics.
Hearing loss in children is an important concern. The sooner you notice a possible problem, the sooner you can get the right help for your child. Call our Ashburn or Stone Ridge, Virginia, office today, or request an appointment online.