In paediatrics, hearing loss falls into one of two categories: congenital or acquired. Of the two, congenital hearing loss is the easier to detect because it is present at birth. Babies undergo several rounds of medical testing throughout the first two years of life to spot medical issues, including congenital conditions. Acquired hearing loss occurs after birth and can be difficult to uncover.
The causes of acquired hearing loss can include: untreated middle-ear infections; excessive noise; damaged or perforated eardrum; meningitis, mumps, measles, or other infections; serious head injuries or diseases.
To detect hearing loss in a child, physicians can run boys and girls through a battery of tests, including using electrodes to measure the response of the child's brainstem.
Hearing loss can occur at any time in life and the earlier it is diagnosed the better chance you have of limiting its damage. With children and adults, conventional signs of hearing loss include depression, anxiety, shyness or social awkwardness, and body language that indicates the person is having trouble understanding when others speak.
The surest thing you can do if you suspect a child has hearing loss is consult a physician. If an adult loved one appears to be having trouble hearing, visit a Connect Hearing clinic for a free test by a hearing-health specialist. Book an appointment today.