Who can develop hearing loss?
Around one in every 1000 births are affected by permanent bilateral hearing loss. Around half of babies born with or developing hearing loss do so with no previous risk factors.
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A baby typically achieves certain milestones during their speech and language development. When a baby or infant appears to have missed some of these milestones, it may indicate they have hearing loss. Some of the more typical milestones may include a …
Some of the more typical causes of congenital hearing loss include: infections during pregnancy; nervous system disorders; being born prematurely; a family history of hearing loss, and; complications during birth.
In Australia, newborn babies are routinely screened to identify babies born with, or at risk of, developing hearing loss.
Treatment of hearing loss varies depending on the cause and severity of hearing loss, and the age of the child, but early intervention measures may include hearing aids and support services.
Hearing loss in newborns cannot be totally prevented, but there are things you can do to minimise the risk, including keeping childhood vaccinations up to date, and getting early treatment for ear infections.
Hearing loss can be: conductive - caused by damage to the outer or middle ear; sensorineural - caused by damage to the inner ear structures, or; mixed - caused by a combination of both.
The following can increase the chance of developing hearing loss: 1) Congenital infections such as HIV, toxoplasmosis, syphilis, varicella, rubella, cytomegalovirus or herpes. 2) Hyperbilirubinemia (too much bilirubin in the blood). 3) …