Thursday, October 25, 2012

About Children and Hearing Loss

Image courtesy of C. Bloomfield at
Babies are not able to tell you that they have hearing loss. 

The first year of life is the most critical to the development of normal speech and language. Because of this, most states require newborn hearing screening tests to determine if a hearing loss is present. 

In the US, there are more then 4,000 babies born with hearing loss each year.

If you have concerns about your child's hearing, schedule a follow-up appointment with an audiologist to have his or her hearing checked again. Audiologists are the primary healthcare professionals that evaluate, diagnose, treat and manage hearing loss and balance disorders in children and adults.

An infant with normal hearing should be able to do the following:

 Around two months of age:
  • Startles to loud sound
  • Quiets to familiar voices
  • Makes vowel sounds like “ohh” 

Around four months of age
  • Starts babbling
  • Looks for sound sources
  • Makes squeals and chuckles

Around six months of age
  • Turns head toward loud sounds
  • Begins to imitate speech sound
  • Babbles sounds like “ba-ba” 

Around nine months of age
  • Imitates speech sounds of others
  • Understands “no-no” or “bye-bye”
  • Turns head toward soft sounds

Around 12 months of age
  • Correctly uses “ma-ma” or “da-da”
  • Gives toy when asked
  • Responds to singing or music

Source: American Academy of Audiology

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