Hearing Tests for Infants and Children
No child is too young to have his or her hearing tested. In fact, some hearing tests can be done on newborns. These tests are important because they help identify hearing problems early. The sooner a hearing problem is found, the sooner managing hearing loss can begin. This allows for the best possible outcome for the child. If you have any concerns about your child’s hearing, be sure to mention them to your child’s healthcare provider. He or she will refer you to an audiologist (healthcare professional who specializes in hearing problems). The audiologist will perform hearing tests on your child. Below are common hearing tests done on infants and children.
Auditory brainstem response audiometry (ABR)
Also called brainstem auditory evoked response (BAER) or brainstem auditory evoked potentials (BAEP).
Otoacoustic emissions (OAE)
Acoustic immittance testing
There are 2 kinds of acoustic immittance tests: tympanometry and acoustic reflex testing.
Behavioral observation audiometry
Visual reinforcement audiometry
Conditioned play audiometry
Conventional screening audiometry
Tips to prepare your child for hearing tests
Help prepare your child for his or her hearing test by doing the following:
If you have earphones or headphones, let your child listen to quiet music through them to get him or her used to using them.
Reassure your child that hearing tests are painless and there are no shots involved.
Tell your child that he or she gets to play games during the test.