Wednesday, July 17th from 1 – 2pm EST I will be joining Hear The World and The Motherhood for a Twitter party focused on Pediatric Hearing Loss. We will spend the hour discussing how to detect, treat and prevent hearing loss in young children. You can also ask questions and hear straight from expert Audiologist, Dr. William Dickinson. Follow along with the hashtag #HearTheWorld and win one of five $25 Amazon gift cards. RSVP at Twtvite.
• Every year, about 665,000 babies around the world are born with significant hearing loss.
• In the United States, approximately 2 out of 1,000 are born with hearing loss.
• The earlier that hearing loss is detected and managed, the more likely a child will develop age-appropriate speech and language.
Hearing loss in children is a very real thing and not only effects hearing but also speech and language. When Genghis was a baby he had very severe ear infections. At least once a month we would end up at the doctor for another ear infection. By the time he was 2 he had been hospitalized once for 4 days for an ear infection.
Shortly before his second birthday we finally had tubes put in his ears. The difference was incredible. Almost immediately the ear infections stopped. And he started talking. A lot.
We never really realized it before but his lack of vocalization was due to not being able to hear correctly. The muffled sounds you hear when you have water in your ears, is how he heard things all the time. To him, it is how he always heard so he didn’t know to tell us he couldn’t hear well.
By the age of 6 he was talking up a storm but we started to notice that his speech was not on the same level as his peers. So we started speech therapy. Thankfully it only took about 3 months of therapy before he was exactly where he needed to be.
Some signs of hearing loss:
• Parents should note how their baby responds to sounds (e.g. do they blink to loud sounds, like clapping?) If there is concern about the baby’s reaction (i.e., they don’t respond), parents should contact their pediatrician.
• Another indication for possible hearing problems is if babies start to babble less, or if their noises do not vary much in pitch.
But hearing loss does not have to be a permanent problem. For more information visit Hear The World.