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Blog Post

Hearing Tests for Children

When Should You Schedule Your Child for a Hearing Test?

Hearing tests are usually scheduled around age 4 years old. Your child may be required to have a hearing test when they begin attending school. Regular hearing tests are important for your child and should be scheduled as soon as possible if you suspect that your child is having difficulty hearing. 

Infants' hearing is often screened before they leave the hospital. All infants should be screened for hearing loss no later than 1 month of age. If a child does not pass a hearing screening, parents are encouraged to schedule a full hearing test for the infant as soon as possible, but no later than 3 months of age. 

A hearing test aims to determine a child’s hearing ability across all audio frequencies. The ability to hear a wide range of frequencies is needed to hear speech and environmental sounds. A variety of hearing tests are available based on a child’s developmental age and capabilities. 

When hearing loss is suspected, early intervention is key to ensuring the child has the resources to reach their developmental milestones. 

Available Hearing Tests

VRA (Visual Reinforcement Audiometry) 6 mo - 2.5 yrs 

During a visual reinforcement hearing test, your child will be instructed to look toward a sound source when they hear a sound. Our doctors at Topeka ENT will work with your child to teach them how the test works and what to do.  We will make the visit as non-threatening and fun as possible. 

CPA (Conditioned Play Audiometry)

The CPA test is designed for children between the ages of 2 and 5 years old.  Conditioned play audiometry uses a machine called an audiometer to assess a child’s hearing threshold levels. Because young children cannot understand a standard pure tone test, the screener will use a game instead. The doctor will teach your child to use manipulatives for the game, such as blocks or pegs when they hear the sound. 

Conventional Audiometry - 5 years and older

Conventional Audiometry test uses headphones and a feedback button. The child will wear the headphones and be instructed to respond when they hear the sound. 

ABR (Auditory Brainstem Response) - birth to 5 months

The ABR evaluation is a diagnostic test of the neural integrity of the auditory system. It is completed when any baby is referred by the newborn hearing screening or who is suspected to have hearing loss. This test allows the doctor to screen for Auditory Neuropathy Spectrum Disorder (ANSD). The ANSD screen can determine the integrity of the auditory nerve function. If the integrity of the auditory nerve is normal, the ABR is also used to estimate hearing thresholds to estimate the degree and type of hearing loss. 

If a parent is concerned about their child’s hearing ability at any age, it is important to talk to your doctor and schedule a screening as soon as possible. Let the professionals at Topeka ENT help put your mind at ease by scheduling an appointment today



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