It can be tough if your baby or young child has been recently diagnosed with having hearing loss. You probably have many questions about what will happen next. You may be feeling anxious, stressed, and overwhelmed about caring for a child with hearing loss. Try to remember that there are now many treatment options that will help at home and during school.
Before this happens, you may be wondering if you even have anything to worry about. You’ve noticed some strange behaviors from your child, but what do they really mean? Here are three common signs of hearing loss in children.
1. They favor one ear over the other
Does your child constantly turn their head towards the source of a sound before they respond? Do they seem to be listening with one ear more than the other? A child with hearing loss that is worse in one ear will end up favoring one over the other. They may even say that they can only hear out of their “good ear” when they are trying to listen. Your child will also say “what” or “I can’t hear you” more often during conversations.
2. They don’t hear you
If your child has hearing loss in one or both ears, they legitimately may not hear you when you talk to them. While this seems like an obvious sign of hearing loss, many parents don’t realize that it is. They think that their child is ignoring them or simply not paying attention. They may not reply when you call for them, even when you are in the same room together. It is important to listen to your child and make an appointment if this happens.
3. They have problems in school
A child with an undiagnosed hearing problem may start to fail in school and at home. Their teachers may notice that they do not respond as well as others in the classroom, a sign that means they are not hearing as well as they should. Many children, especially young ones, do not realize that they even have a problem if it has never been addressed before. A loss of hearing can lead to a loss of concentration. From there, failing grades may be a step behind.
There are many other signs that your child may have some sort of hearing loss. They may stare at you when you are speaking to them, as if they are concentrating hard on what you are saying. A young child may complain of earaches in one or both ears. Don’t be afraid to go to a doctor for help. Your family physician can check for hearing loss and send your child to a specialist if the situation calls for it.