How To Tell If A Newborn Is Deaf

What Should I Do If My Babys Hearing Screening Reveals Potential Hearing Loss

Raising a Deaf Child – My Parents Share How They Found Out I Was Deaf & How They Raised Me

If the results show that your baby may have hearing loss, make an appointment with a pediatric audiologista hearing expert who specializes in the assessment and management of children with hearing loss. This follow-up exam should be done as soon as possible, ideally by the time the baby is 2 to 3 months old. The audiologist will conduct tests to determine whether your baby has a hearing problem and, if so, the type and extent of that problem.

If you need help finding a pediatric audiologist, ask your pediatrician or the hospital staff who conducted your babys screening. They may even be able to help you schedule an appointment. You can also try the directories provided by the American Academy of Audiology or the American SpeechLanguageHearing Association. If the follow-up examination confirms that your baby has hearing loss, he or she should begin receiving intervention services as soon as possible, ideally by the age of 3 to 6 months. See our Babys hearing screening and next steps: Timeline for parents for a guide to follow.

The pediatric audiologist may recommend that your baby visit a pediatric ear, nose, and throat physician who specializes in conditions affecting the ear, known as a pediatric otologist. A pediatric otologist can determine possible causes of hearing loss and recommend intervention options. If your child has siblings, the audiologist or otologist may also recommend that their hearing be tested.

What Are Signs Of Hearing Loss

Signs of hearing loss in your baby can include:

  • Not being startled by loud sounds
  • Not turning toward a sound after hes 6 months old
  • Not saying single words like mama or dada by the time hes 1 year old
  • Turns his head if he sees you, but not if you only call out his name
  • Seems to hear some sounds but not others

If your baby shows signs of hearing loss at any time, call his health care provider to get your babys hearing checked.

Different Children Have Different Amounts Of Hearing Loss

A few children are completely deaf they do not hear at all. Parents often notice early that their child cannot hear, because she does not turn her head or respond, even to loud sounds.

Much more often, children are partly deaf. A child may show surprise or turn her head to a loud noise, but not to softer noises. She may respond to a low-pitched sound like thunder, a drum, or a cow’s ‘moo’, but not to high-pitched sounds like a whistle or a rooster crowing. Or a child may respond to high-pitched sounds but not low ones.

Some children who are partly deaf hear a little when people speak to them. They may slowly learn to recognize and respond to some words. But many words they do not hear clearly enough to understand. They are slow to begin to speak. Often they do not speak clearly, mix up certain sounds, or seem to ‘talk through their nose’. Unfortunately, sometimes parents, other children, and teachers do not realize that the child has difficulty hearing. They may treat her as if she is mentally slow, or ‘dumb’. This only increases the child’s problems.

Read Also: How To Keep A Newborn Awake

When To Visit The Doctor

Parents and grandparents are most likely to notice a possible hearing problem because they spend the most time with the baby. If you think your baby may have trouble hearing, work with your pediatrician to make an appointment with a hearing specialist before your baby is 3 months old. Babies whose hearing loss is discovered and treated early can develop normal speech and language along with other children their age.

Though the reasons for hearing loss in babies often arenât known, your babyâs hearing specialist may ask you about some things that may affect their chances of having it:

  • Do other family members have a hearing problem?
  • Were there medical problems during the pregnancy or delivery?
  • Was your baby born early?
  • Did your baby have a low birth weight ?

Itâs important to know, though, that as many as 50% of babies born with hearing loss donât have any known risk factors. Also, hearing loss can sometimes be caused by other health problems, so your baby may also be evaluated by an ear, nose and throat specialist.

Do Children With Hearing Problems Develop The Same As Other Children


It depends on how early the problem is diagnosed. Children who are diagnosed laterespecially after 2 years of agemay have lifelong problems with language, speech and literacy. If the hearing loss begins at a later age, especially after the child has started to talk, your childs language development may be less affected.

Success in school is linked to literacybeing able to read and write effectively. And literacy is linked to the hearing and speech areas in the brain. To be able to speak, children need to hear. Children who hear and speak learn to read and write more easily.

The first few months of life are critical for developing the speech and language area of the brain. Studies show that the earlier a baby can hear, the better their language skills will be. Deaf children who are diagnosed early and get the right kind of help can develop just like other children their age.

Don’t Miss: When Should Newborn Puppies Go To The Vet

How Are Hearing Problems Diagnosed

There are a few ways to detect hearing loss very early in life. The oto-acoustic emission test is the most common one . A specialist will put a small microphone in your babys ear, which sends a sound. The echo that comes back is sent to a portable computer. The computer can tell whether the baby heard the sound. The test, which takes 10 to 15 minutes, can often be done before your newborn baby leaves the hospital or at a designated hearing screening unit after leaving the hospital.

The Canadian Paediatric Society recommends that all newborns have their hearing tested. Many Canadian provinces and territories have universal newborn hearing screening programsmeaning all babies are tested at birth. Families of babies who screen positive should follow up with a full hearing evaluation.

What Is Hearing Loss

Hearing loss can happen when any part of the ear isnt working in the usual way. It can range from mild to profound:

  • Mild: You can hear some speech sounds, but soft sounds are hard to hear.
  • Moderate: You cant hear very many speech sounds when someone is talking at a normal level.
  • Severe: You cant hear any speech sounds when someone is talking at a normal level. You can only hear some loud sounds.
  • Profound: You cant hear any speech sounds. You can only hear very loud sounds.

Hearing loss is a common birth defect. Birth defects are structural changes present at birth that can affect almost any part of the body. They may affect how the body looks, works or both. Birth defects can cause problems in overall health, how the body develops, or how the body works. Up to 3 in 1,000 babies are born with some kind of hearing loss in the United States each year.

When a baby is born with hearing loss, its called congenital hearing loss. Hearing loss also can develop later in babies or during childhood or adulthood.

Read Also: Should You Swaddle A Newborn To Sleep

How Do You Know If Your Baby Is Deaf In The Womb

Sit with your baby and play with them by saying the vowel sounds and give them time to mimic you. You just might be surprised when they coo them back to you! Hearing loss in infants is more common than we thing. 1 in 1000 babies are born with some form of hearing impairment. Early detection is key In most states, hospitals do a newborn hearing screening before the baby goes home. If it’s not done then, or the baby was born at home or a birthing center, it’s important to get a newborn hearing screening within the first 3 weeks of life. A baby who doesn’t pass a hearing screening doesn’t necessarily have a hearing loss When a baby is born deaf then it is termed as congenital hearing loss, i.e. hearing loss is present from the child’s birth. There are genetic and non-genetic causes for a baby to be born deaf. Congenital deafness may also develop later which occurs as a result of genetic causes or factors which affected the fetus in utero

Your baby may be head down if you can: feel hiccups on the lower part of your belly, meaning that their chest is likely lower than their legs. hear their heartbeat (using an at-home doppler or. Heart Rate. It is a general notion that if your baby’s heart rate is under 140 beats per minute it is a boy, while higher than 140 beats is considered a girl. 4. Low Baby Bump. If you are carrying a low baby bump, it is very likely to be a boy, and if you carry high, it is likely to be a girl. 5

Hearing Loss At Birth

How to Investigate Deaf Child?

Congenital hearing loss means hearing loss that is present at birth. Causes of hearing loss in newborns include:

  • infections, such as rubella or herpes simplex virus
  • premature birth
  • drug and alcohol use while pregnant
  • jaundice and Rh factor problems
  • maternal diabetes
  • high blood pressure while pregnant, called preeclampsia
  • the baby not having enough oxygen, called anoxia
  • genetics

Genetics is the cause of hearing loss in many babies. Genetic hearing loss can be present at birth or develop later in life. The genes that cause hearing loss can come from one or both parents. You both may hear fine but carry a gene that causes hearing loss in your baby. Or, one of you may have a hearing loss that you pass on to your baby.

Some babies have a genetic syndrome. Hearing loss may be a part of the syndrome. Examples include:

  • Down syndrome

Read Also: How To Babysit A Newborn

How Is The Newborn Hearing Test Done

The newborn hearing test is called the automated otoacoustic emission test. It takes just a few minutes.

A small soft-tipped earpiece is placed in your baby’s ear and gentle clicking sounds are played.

It’s not always possible to get clear responses from the 1st test. This happens with lots of babies, and does not always mean your baby has permanent hearing loss.

It could mean:

  • your baby was unsettled when the test was done
  • there was background noise
  • your baby has fluid or a temporary blockage in their ear

In these cases, your baby will be offered a 2nd test. This may be the same as the 1st test, or another type called the automated auditory brainstem response test.

The AABR test involves placing 3 small sensors on your baby’s head and neck. Soft headphones are placed over your baby’s ears and gentle clicking sounds are played. This test takes between 5 and 15 minutes.

These tests will not harm your baby in any way.

What Language And Communication Approaches Might Be Available For My Child

Children who are deaf or hard-of-hearing can learn to communicate in several ways. Find out as much as you can about the communication choices and ask your health care team to refer you to experts if you want to know more. Because language development begins early, regardless of the communication mode you choose, you should engage with your child and begin intervention as soon as possible.

Common approaches used to help children with hearing loss communicate and interact with others include:

  • Listening and spoken language : works to strengthen listening, talking, and reading skills through the use of natural hearing and hearing devices such as hearing aids and cochlear implants, without the use of manual communication.
  • Auditory-oral: emphasizes residual natural hearing in combination with amplification devices and technology to help children develop speech and spoken-language skills. It includes the use of speech reading and natural gestures in the communication process.
  • Cued speech: is a system of specific hand shapes and placements that represent groups of consonants and vowels and that are used in combination with natural lip movements.
  • American Sign Language: is a visual-manual, natural language that is used in the American Deaf community.
  • Combined approaches: use aspects of various communication approaches, some of which are listed above, to expose children who are deaf or hard-of-hearing to many ways to communicate with others.

You May Like: How To Take A Newborn A Bath

Doesnt Make Vowel Sounds

A E I O and U. We know these at vowels, and babies starts uttering these letters very early. While they have no idea what they are saying, the should start making some sort of vowel sound by the time they are 2 months old. The inability to make vowel sounds could also have nothing to do with hearing, but may indicate a problem with speech. It is always tricky with a little baby who can not talk or express themselves to diagnose, but it is worth a talk with the pediatrician.

Sit with your baby and play with them by saying the vowel sounds and give them time to mimic you. You just might be surprised when they coo them back to you! Hearing loss in infants is more common than we thing. 1 in 1000 babies are born with some form of hearing impairment. Early detection is key.

Treating Hearing Loss In Babies

How do deaf people know if a baby is crying?

After a thorough assessment, your hearing care provider will recommend treatment. For most infants with hearing loss, this will be a pediatric hearing aid. Yes, even babies as young as a few months can wear hearing aids.

Even babies just a few months old can wear hearing aids.

In some cases, a cochlear implant or bone-anchored hearing system will be recommended instead, likely when the child is a little bit older.

Don’t Miss: How Many Diapers To Buy For Newborn

What Causes A Baby To Be Born Deaf

When a baby is born deaf then it is termed as congenital hearing loss, i.e. hearing loss is present from the childs birth. There are genetic and non-genetic causes for a baby to be born deaf. Congenital deafness may also develop later which occurs as a result of genetic causes or factors which affected the fetus in utero.

Symptoms Of Baby Turning Head Down

After 30 weeks, it may be good to do daily exercises to help your baby get head down. If you healthy enough to do inversions, please try the 5-7 Forward-leaning Inversions for One day, and do Side-lying Release after the first 2-3 to add maximum room for the next 3-4 to work better Your doctor can estimate the size of the baby by measuring from the top of the pubic bone to the top of the uterus . Keep in mind that a full bladder and belly fat can change this measurement, so it’s not a. The truth is, you can’t know that baby’s okay in there. You won’t know he’s okay with the babysitter either. Or at college. Yes, there is stuff that can go wrong. But, there’s a much better chance that everything will be just fine and you’re on your way to having a healthy little mini-me

Also Check: How To Prevent Colic In Newborn Babies

Related Posts

Popular Articles