4 Signs Your Child Needs a Hearing Test

young girl receiving hearing exam from specialist

Identifying the early indicators of hearing loss and scheduling an appointment with an audiologist can be difficult for adults, but it is normally something that the individual in question can manage on their own. When it comes to children with hearing loss, however, it is up to the parents to recognize the warning signals and then make preparations for an audiology appointment to get hearing tested on their children's behalf.

As a result, it is vital for parents to be alert to early warning indications that their children may be experiencing or developing hearing loss.

Here are four signs that your child needs a hearing test.

They tell you they cannot hear properly

Young children will instinctively want to communicate their concerns to their parents, so actively listening to their own remarks is the first step in determining whether your child has early indicators of hearing loss. 

If your child regularly complains that they can't hear something – whether it is because they can't hear what you're saying to them, or because the volume on the TV is too low or for any number of other reasons – this is a clear indication that you should schedule an audiologist appointment for them, just to get a clear idea of the situation. It could be a simple build-up of wax or something that can be treated easily – but it could be the start of long-term hearing loss

They Start to Struggle at School

There could be a myriad of reasons for your child's marks to drop or for them not to appear to be paying attention in class. While personal problems and broader behavioral issues may be to blame, it is also possible that your child is just struggling to hear what is being said and is too hesitant to express it openly. Often, discussions between parents and teachers are the first step towards recognizing that there may be a hearing issue.

It is a good idea to ask your child things such as, can you hear the teacher clearly, to gain a clear understanding of the issue. In any case, speaking with an audiologist can help to explain the situation and rule out any hearing loss or other hearing problems that your child may be experiencing. 

Your Child Has to Concentrate Very Hard When Someone Is Speaking or to Watch Television

Of course, it is possible that your child is typically very attentive, but if you notice that they seem unusually focused or concentrated whenever you talk to them or when they are watching TV – and especially if they have recently gotten more focused whenever you talk to them – this could be an indication of hearing loss. They may be trying to listen very carefully or are watching your lips and facial expressions to gain an understanding of what is being said. It is very possible that your youngster has no idea what is going on, but they are doing everything they can to follow the conversation and avoid letting on.

Your Child’s Volume of Speech Is Loud and They Appear to Argue with You a Lot 

This is a tough one because children can generally be loud and boisterous anyway, and as they approach their teen years and puberty may also become more likely to argue with you over the smallest of things.

However, if it has come on recently, it may be that they simply cannot hear their own voice properly, and so compensate by speaking louder. They cannot gauge the volume of their own voice. They may also be turning up the TV or the radio louder than before. They may become more argumentative as they become frustrated with their situation.

What May Have Caused Hearing Loss in a Child?

There are two types of pediatric hearing loss: congenital and acquired loss. Congenital hearing loss can be caused by an infection during pregnancy, birth difficulties, a brain or nervous system disorder, a genetic abnormality or a family history of hearing loss. Untreated middle-ear infections, other forms of infections, eardrum perforation, a head injury, excessive noise or other conditions can all cause acquired juvenile hearing loss.

If you are concerned about your child’s hearing or want to speak to a highly skilled audiologist about anything hearing-related, call Peninsula Hearing today at Poulsbo: 360-697-3061 or Port Townsend: 360-379-5458.