Hearing difficulties can often affect just about every facet of a child’s life, from their social development to their academics, which is why it needs to be diagnosed and dealt with as quickly as possible. Many people still believe that children cannot be accurately tested for hearing difficulties before they are about 5 years old, but this isn’t true; these days, tests can be done on newborns before they are discharged from the hospital. (http://www.medicinenet.com/detecting_hearing_loss_in_children/article.htm)
Mild To Severe Hearing Loss
It is important for individuals to remember that not all hearing loss is severe; in some instances, even milder cases have caused a great disruption in a child’s life. Since many schools now screen for hearing loss, parents might assume that if their children have passed the test, they don’t have a problem. According to some experts, however, children who’ve passed these tests with mild hearing difficulties have gone on to be branded “difficult” because they weren’t “listening” in class. (http://www.goodschoolsguide.co.uk/help-and-advice/special-needs-advice/types-of-sen/sensory-difficulties/203/hearing-impairments)
For this reason, it’s generally a better idea to have a full examination conduction on a child if a parent suspects they might be having trouble hearing.
Deafness isn’t considered a special need on its own, but when combined with other learning, behavioral or physical disabilities, it ends up presenting a unique challenge to the individual and their parents.
The Symptoms of Hearing Difficulties
Some of the symptoms of hearing difficulties mimic certain other issues, such as ADHD. Someone struggling with their hearing might present as having a very limited attention span, irritable and they might be slow to respond. Children with this problem might also stick to breathing through their mouth or they might daydream a lot.
When a medical professional diagnoses hearing difficulties in a child, they will usually make the diagnosis on a continuum that includes; mild, moderate, severe and profound. Children who suffer from mild hearing loss should receive assistance that will help them make slight adjustments to their lifestyle to accommodate for this. Those with severe or profound difficulties will most likely have to learn sign language as an effective tool to communicate with others.
Different Types of Hearing Difficulties
There are a few different types of conditions that can result in hearing difficulties and in order to treat them or to come up with ways in which to deal with them, professionals need to be aware of the underlying causes and symptoms.
Abnormality in the outer or the middle ear could end up resulting in conductive deafness; this is because the sound vibrations aren’t being amplified or conveyed properly as they make their way to the inner. This type of issues tends to be temporary more often than not and the resulting deafness is usually only mild. Around 20% of children tend to experience this problem but by the time they reach middle school, this number falls to 2%.
This condition is also sometimes referred to as nerve deafness and it is a much more serious problem that might very well be permanent. The causes of this condition range from genetics to damage induced by trauma and while it is rare, it often ends up being permanent.
When a person struggles with this condition, it is generally their cochlea that doesn’t process the sound very effectively; this means that they are either distorted or they could end up being too quiet. One of the most challenges facets of this problem is that people could end up finding it very difficult to speak properly. One of the ways in which the condition is tackled is through very powerful hearing aids, although this will depend on each specific condition.
Hearing difficulties can be tackled in a wide variety of ways; while some children prefer to be taught in specialized schools, others prefer to integrate into average schools. Ultimately, each situation is different and needs to be tackled as such. For more information on this condition, please visit: http://www.nidcd.nih.gov/Pages/default.aspx