Hearing Loss in Children

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Your young child seems to ignore you. They are slower than normal to start speaking. Is this a behavior problem, or is something else happening? Dr. Edward Hill shares some insight in todays 60 Second Housecall.

Dr. Hill:

Hearing loss in children can have serious consequences for their development.

Hearing loss is categorized into two main types: conductive and sensorineural. In conductive hearing loss, there is a problem with the transmission of sound through the outer and middle ear. The middle ear contains three tiny bones that transmit sounds to make the eardrum vibrate.

In sensorineural hearing loss, there is damage to the hair cells in the inner ear.

The conductive hearing loss may be reversible. Sensorineural loss may not be.

Screening for hearing loss is recommended for all newborns. For infants, their hearing loss is typically genetic. It is important to diagnose this early to prevent problems in language development. Older children may have persistent fluid in their middle ear as a cause of hearing loss.

It is important to recognize and diagnose the cause of hearing loss as early as possible in children. This will give them the best chance for normal growth and development.

For North Mississippi Medical Center, Im Dr. Edward Hill.