Experts share how to spot hearing loss in children | KOB 4

Experts share how to spot hearing loss in children

Casey Torres
August 23, 2019 11:03 AM

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Hearing loss in children is a possibility that can happen from birth or in later years.


"With a mild hearing loss, that is something a child themselves may not even really notice, especially if it gradually comes on, or if they were born with a hearing loss," said Diana Vigil, doctor of audiology at The Hearing Group.

There are different types of hearing loss.

The first one is Conductive Hearing Loss (CDL). Vigil said this is temporary and the most treatable form of hearing loss. It could require medications or surgery. The audiologist said ear infections often cause temporary hearing loss in kids.

The other type of hearing loss is when a nerve is affected. Vigil said it's called Sensorineural Hearing Loss (SHL), which can be permanent. It can be caused by genetics or by infections, like meningitis, that are left untreated for a long time.

Hearing aids or a Cochlear implant could be used to hear again.

If a child can't hear well, it can impact their school grades.

"It's gonna affect how they learn. They're gonna miss concepts, new concepts. They may miss assignments," she said.

Since some children might not realize their hearing is declining, Vigil said parents and teachers can look for signs.

Some of the signs include:

  • Having the television louder
  • Asking people to repeat what they said frequently
  • Small children might not respond to their name
  • Mispronouncing words
  • Mild behavioral issues that could be do to not hearing instructions
  • Difficulty with friends over misunderstanding what they said

A concerned parent should reach out to a family doctor or an audiologist. Vigil said parents don't need a referral to schedule an appointment with an audiology clinic in New Mexico.

Pediatricians will conduct a hearing screening test, while an audiologist will run a diagnostic hearing test that could take 30 minutes in a room specialized for hearing.


Casey Torres

Copyright 2019 KOB-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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