Taking your child to a hearing test for the first time can be a little daunting. What will it be like? Will it be scary for them? Will it be painful? How long will it take? It’s tough when you don’t know what to expect. That’s why we’ve put together this helpful overview of what your child’s hearing test can be like.
We need to figure out how much hearing loss your child has and what’s causing it. Sometimes the hearing loss is temporary, other times it’s permanent. Our quick and painless tests will help us figure out the problem and treat it.
Here’s an idea of what you can expect:
The first check we will do is called a Tympanometry test. It checks to see if your child’s eardrum is working properly. We’ll use a small probe that makes little pressure changes in each ear. It can feel funny, but don’t worry, it’s not painful.
Echo check – newborns
Healthy ears make a tiny echo of sounds they hear. A mini microphone can pick up these echoes. Very young children and newborns can’t show us if their hearing is working properly, so an Otoacoustic Emissions (echo) test will check to see if the echoes are as they should be. We’ll use a small probe that makes tiny clicking sounds and measures the echo that comes back.
Visual hearing check – 3 years and under
For children under 3, we’ll do a visual hearing test to find out the quietest sound they can hear. Your child hears a sound, at the same time a toy lights up. Soon your child associates toy and sound together. Next they hear the sound on its own, sometimes louder, sometimes softer. When they hear the sound they’ll look at the toy which then automatically lights up when they look at it.
Play hearing check – 3-6 year olds
Just as the visual hearing check for the under 3’s we’re checking for the softest sound your child can hear. We’ll use a fun sound block. You child listens to the block and when it makes a sound they throw it into a bucket.
Adult hearing check – over 6 years
Children over 6 can usually go for an adult hearing test. These are also pain free, simple and quick so there’s no need to feel worried.
If we find a treatable hearing problem, such as an infection, we’ll refer your child to a specialist for treatment. If we find permanent hearing loss we’ll find the right type of hearing aids to help your child hear better. If you think your child needs a hearing check, give our friendly team at Allison Audiology a call to see how we can help.