Pediatric Hearing Losses

Children are cute, charming and jolly-good but equally troublesome fellas. One trait that they share with old people is not caring to listen to the others. It is the most common complaint parents have with their child. But, is this just part of their mischief or is your child suffering from an ear disorder which you have failed to notice? It is very likely that in the latter case, your child might be suffering from Pediatric hearing loss. The pediatric hearing loss is the hearing impairment that develops at the early age of a child. Most of the research studies point out that five out of every thousand children are diagnosed with the hearing loss. Another research study conducted in 2013 estimated that nearly 10.5 percent of children and 12.5 percent of adolescents have fallen victims permanent hearing impairment due to the exposure to excessive noise.

Causes of pediatric hearing loss

There can be multiple factors that could be responsible for the pediatric hearing loss. But broadly they can be classified as following three. They are

  • Congenital hearing loss: As the name indicates, this condition develops in the child at the time of birth. It could be caused due to the genetic factors, non-genetic factors, or both. Genetic factors account for more than 50 percent of congenital hearing loss cases. And non-genetic factors account for around 25 percent of congenital hearing loss cases. Non-genetic factors include premature birth, drug or alcohol abuse during pregnancy, birth complications from rubella, herpes, etc.
  • Acquired hearing loss: In some children, this hearing impairment condition develops after a few years of their birth. It can happen as a result of the unprotected exposure to the loud noise, serious head injury, intake of ototoxic medication and frequent ear infections.
  • Transient hearing loss: This condition is also called as fluctuating hearing loss caused by the middle ear infection. In this situation, the space between the middle ear and the nasopharynx gets blocked by fluids. Around 70 percent of the children develop middle ear infection by the time they become three years old.

Treatment for pediatric hearing loss

The treatment for pediatric hearing loss depends on the severity and cause of the hearing loss. The following could the methods employed to treat your child’s hearing loss.

  • Hearing aids: Hearing aid is recommended for the people with residual hearing ability. This device receives the sound’s produced in the surroundings, amplify the sound waves and send them back to ear through a speaker so that damaged ear could hear them.
  • Cochlear implants: Cochlear implants are tiny electronic hearing devices designed for the people suffering from severe hearing loss. These implants sense the sound signals produced in the environment, bypass the damaged ear cells, and stimulate the auditory nerve which in turn produce sensations of sound and sends these signals to the brain.

Assistive listening devices: These assistive listening devices work based on the FM technology and are interconnected either with the hearing aid or with the cochlear implant. This device is helpful in coping up with the excessive background noise in a classroom or meeting room kind of setting

About the author

Best ent doctor hyderabad | Dr.GVK Chaitanya Rao

Dr. Chaitanya Rao, Managing director at Dr. Rao’s ENT group of hospitals has 10 years experience in the field of ENT.

His special areas of interest include Nose & sinus surgeries, Otology, Snoring and sleep apnea surgeries. During his Post-graduation itself he was invited as a visiting physician to House Institute of Medical sciences, Los Angeles; Rhinology and Anterior skull base unit, Ohio State University Medical Centre, Columbus, Ohio and University of Michigan from where he picked up his skills.

He plays a key role (Course Director & co-ordinator) in giving hands on training to around 150 ENT surgeons every year from all around the world for initiating and improving their ENT surgical skills as a part of Hyderabad ENT Research Foundation initiatives.

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