October is a time for celebration—not just in the costumes-and-candy way, but also in the empowerment through education way! For those who might not know, October is Audiology Awareness month, and as hearing health professionals, we welcome the opportunity to encourage awareness and education about America’s third most common health problem: hearing loss. Hearing loss doesn’t discriminate; it can impact individuals of all walks of life, including children. In order to help our community identify hearing loss in children, we’ve compiled need-to-know information on pediatric hearing impairment.
- Approximately 12% of children from ages 6 to 19 suffer from noise-induced hearing loss.
- Approximately 1.4 out of every 1,000 newborns have hearing loss.
- One in five teens has loss.
- When untreated, loss of hearing can cause delays in communication and social functioning.
- Noise-induced loss is permanent, but 100% preventable.
- Regular exposure to unsafe noise levels (sporting events, band class, mp3 players, arcades) can cause irreversible noise-induced hearing loss.
- Frequent untreated middle ear infections can cause lasting damage to the auditory system, resulting in permanent loss.
- As many as 60% of hearing loss cases in children are genetic.
Prevention and Diagnosis:
- If your child is regularly exposed to loud noise, invest in a custom hearing protection option that will allow them to hear sounds at a safe volume.
- If you suspect your child is not meeting communication development goals, consult an audiologist. Audiologists are able to diagnose hearing loss in children as young as six months old through behavioral hearing examinations.
When it comes to loss of hearing, early intervention is key. If left untreated, hearing can further deteriorate and cause other health complications. If you suspect you or a loved one may be hearing impaired, San Diego Hearing Center can help. Our team of audiology experts are dedicated to the hearing health of each patient. To schedule a consultation, contact our staff at (858) 279-3277.