Hearing is a critical part of the emotional, social and cognitive development at every stage of a child's life. Mild or partial hear loss can have a tremendous effect on their ability to develop language and speaking skills properly.Therefore, routine testing can and should occur at any age, from infancy to school age. The methods a conducting a hearing test Houston TX
will vary based on the developmental age of the child.Types of Tests for Children's HearingDuring the hearing evaluation, your child's pediatrician will perform a complete physical exam and medical history. This may include information about you and your spouse's family history as well. The different types of tests to check your child's hearing is typically based on your child's age and her level of understanding. There are some tests that are used for all ages.Newborn ScreeningsTwo primary screening methods are used for newborns: Evoked otoacoustic emissions and auditory brainstem response. These tests might be given separately or together.Evoked otoacoustic emissions involves inserting a tiny flexible plug into the newborn's ear. Sounds are sent through the plug while a microphone records the baby's responses. Nothing emits when the baby has hearing loss.The auditory brainstem response attaches wires to the baby's scalp. Clicking sounds are made into the baby's ear while she sleeps. The brain's activity in response to sounds is measured.Infant ScreeningsHearing evaluation for an infant may include the EOAE and ABR tests for infants. In addition, your pediatrician may also conduct a behavioral audiometry. This screening looks for how an infant responds to different sounds.Toddler ScreeningsIn addition to the above mentioned tests, toddlers may also undergo a play audiometry screening. This test uses an electrical machine that sends sounds to your child's ear. Different volumes and pitches are used while your child wears earphones. The pediatrician asks your child to do something whenever the sound is heard.Screenings for Older ChildrenChildren above four years old may receive a pure tone audiometry test and a tympanometry test that determines how the middle ear functions. Instead of determining whether your child hears, this test checks for pressure changes in the middle ear.With the multitude of tests available, hearing problems can be reversed if caught early enough. Ideally, screenings begin when your baby is three months old. Make sure testing your baby's ears early become a priority. Continue with screenings at each age level so you and your pediatrician can find any possible issues before the condition worsens.