Recognizing the Signs of Hearing Impairment in Your Child
Hearing plays a vital role in the development of a child’s emotional, social and intellectual growth. However, their speaking and language-comprehension abilities can potentially be halted by even mild or partial hearing impairment. As a parent, we know you’d go above and beyond for your child. The good news is that if your child has hearing loss, he/she can be treated effectively after being properly evaluated. This means your child’s hearing screenings and evaluations are highly important.
Spotting the Causes
Statistics show that about 1 to 3 babies out of every 1,000 can be born with hearing loss. There are many factors that could potentially lead to this impairment, although no cause is found in nearly half of reported cases. Hearing loss can occur as a result of:
- Premature birth
- Neonatal Intensive Care Unit stay
- Exposure to extremely loud noises
- Infections from meningitis or cytomegalovirus
- Frequent ear infections
- Birth complications
- Family history of hearing loss
Identifying the Signs
It’s important to continually monitor your child’s hearing progress even if they have passed their hearing screening. Keep in mind that newborns are startled by sudden, loud noises and will begin to recognize their parent’s voice at three months of age. At six months, a child will turn their head toward a sound. By 12 months, he/she will imitate sounds and begin to produce simple words such as “mama” and “dada”.
Some hearing loss signs you can identify as your baby grows include:
- Trouble learning
- Requiring increased TV volume
- Doesn’t respond to conversational speech or incorrectly answers questions
- Partial, poor or no speech
At Hope Therapy Center, we value your child’s well-being and will work as best we can to improve his/her hearing development. Our McAllen speech-language pathologist and occupational therapist employ caring and effective techniques to help you and your child progress together.