Hearing loss in children has the potential to damage cognitive, social, and educational development. Undetected, hearing loss in children limits their participation in activities that are essential to living an independent and rewarding lifestyle as children as well as in adulthood. With early treatment and support, I have plenty of resources available to help younger patients in the LaGrange community participate in the various development enriching activities through better hearing. As part of my commitment to our community, here are some guidelines concerning what you should do if you are concerned about your child’s hearing.

Educate Yourself

One of the first things you can do is to educate yourself about the various warning signs, testing, and treatment options available for children with a hearing loss. Although hearing loss is a bit easier to detect in toddlers, it is good to have an understanding of how to identify it in them as well as in older children. It is also helpful to understand the various treatment options, which depend upon the severity of hearing loss and its identified causes. Hear-it.org is a good resource to start your learning process. In addition to these resources, it is beneficial to connect with various hearing loss support groups. Online chat communities for parents and children with a hearing loss allow the sharing of valuable practical applications and realistic experiences.

Communication

Because children with a hearing loss often feel isolated from the other kids, it is important for you to maintain a good line of communication with your child in order to provide the very best support and encouragement as well as keeping them involved. Foster a strong relationship built on honesty and trust while encouraging other family members to understand the difficulties faced by individuals with a hearing loss and the best way to support and encourage them.

Treatment Options

Earlier detection of hearing loss not only decreases language related challenges, but it also heads off limitations to cognitive, social, and learning development. In some cases, hearing loss is temporary and can be treated through minor surgical procedures, which might include the removal of a growth, reducing inflammation through the use of ear tubes, excess wax removal, or other procedures. Medications often provide a solution as well.

Although cochlear implants and hearing aids are some of the options audiologists turn to in the treatment of permanent childhood hearing loss, they are not the only options nor are they a quick and final solution. Treatment for hearing loss in children is ongoing, providing support in various educational, social, interpersonal, and relationship building activities to encourage greater growth and independence.

Hearing Loss in Children and Audiology and Hearing Aid Associates

Early detection of hearing loss in children is something we take seriously at our Audiology and Hearing Aid Associates clinic because we are aware of the difficulties that your child could face throughout their life if left untreated. My team and I have the expertise to evaluate, treat, and provide the ongoing support necessary to maintain the best quality of life possible for your child, your family, and you. Contact us to learn more about the child hearing loss solutions and support available from Audiology and Hearing Aid Associates.

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Erika Shakespeare CCC-A

Erika Shakespeare CCC-A

Erika Shakespeare, CCC-A, specializes in pediatric and adult diagnostics and amplification. Working with adults to help manage tinnitus and hearing loss since 2002, she is an expert in both of these areas. Additionally, she is a pediatric audiology mentor and educator for pediatric audiologists across the country and is one of the most respected experts on pediatric audiology.