Hearing Loss At the Bottom of the Age Ladder

The cliché is that hearing issues are for the oldsters, something to look out for when the Social Security checks start showing up or even a tagalong with a mid-life crisis.

But the fact is, for some people, their genetics forward-loads that process into the years of childhood. The vast majority of children won’t develop hearing issues. But some will.

And for a variety of reasons, it can be easy to miss. Like not realizing immediately that a kid’s eyesight is degrading, hearing can alter slowly enough so that it’s not immediately apparent.

The adults that surround children can all make assumptions about behavior and not realize that what is really going on is a hearing problem. Not responding to verbal instructions can be chalked up to short attention spans. Teenage angst can be blamed for any kind of behavior.

But here are some signs that a hearing test for a child might be required:

  • Yes, kids often like to turn the volume up (especially for music). But if they seem to actually need high volume to follow TV shows or talk radio then maybe more is afoot.
  • Noticing a child consistently turning their head so that they’re using the same ear to listen to you can be a sign that there’s an issue in the other ear.
  • If it seems they have to see you talking to actually understand you can also be a sign. Depending on visual cues to follow conversations when hearing is weakened can be a subconscious adaptation.
  • Falling grades and teacher concern about being active in class can also be a signal of hearing issues.

Tests are simple and easily arranged. And it’s always better to deal with hearing loss sooner rather than later.

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