Hearing Loss in Children

A child may experience hearing loss that can impact their ability to communicate, speak, and use social skills.

Hearing Loss in Children

A child may experience hearing loss that can impact their ability to communicate, speak, and use social skills.

Auditory Processing Disorder/ Pediatric Hearing Loss.

Three million children under the age of eighteen have some hearing loss. At birth, 1 in 1,000 children has significant permanent hearing loss. When mild hearing loss is included, 6 in 1,000 children are affected. By age 18, 17 in 1,000 people have some degree of permanent hearing loss (this does not include the type of hearing loss caused by fluid in the ears or ear infections).

What are the Symptoms of Pediatric Hearing Loss?

  • Speech and language delay
  • Not babbling, or babbling has stopped
  • By 12 months, does not understand simple phrases such as “wave bye-bye” or “clap hands”
  • By two years old, should have 50 words and put two words together
  • Not turning head in direction of the sound
  • Difficulties in school

What Causes Pediatric Hearing Loss?

Nerve hearing loss, also called sensorineural hearing loss (SNHL), is permanent. This is caused by genetic factors in half of cases. The other half of cases may be due to infection (such as meningitis or congenital cytomegalovirus, CMV), head trauma, noise trauma, anatomic abnormalities, or certain medications. Sometimes, a cause can’t be identified (idiopathic).

Conductive hearing loss is usually temporary and caused by fluid in the middle ear, or an abnormality of the eardrum or hearing bones. The middle ear is the part behind the eardrum where three tiny bones connect sound from the eardrum to the cochlea, the nerve part of the hearing. The middle ear is the area where ear infections occur. Ear infections can leave fluid in the middle ear after the infection is gone. On the other hand, some children can get fluid in the middle ear when the tube from the nose to the ear (the eustachian tube) does not work well.


Treatment Options May Include:

Hearing TestsEar Tubes

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