Hearing Loss in Children
Take yourself back to your childhood. The sound of laughter, the smell of chocolate, the taste of ice cream, the touch of a teddy, the sight of a play park or sand on the beach. So much of our young lives were filled with discovery of our five senses! Adventure after adventure opened us up to a whole world of possibilities. Our imaginations were alive and bursting with creativity. It is the same for every child today. Each day is a new voyage of discovery.
But what happens when the child loses one of their senses? Take for example hearing. This can have a detrimental effect on their overall development. The world becomes a very different place in which to inhabit. The good news is that when it comes to hearing loss and children, over 60% of hearing loss is preventable! But as with all things, the sooner one takes action, the better.
The total prevalence at school entry of unilateral (in one ear) and bilateral (in both ears) mild to profound hearing loss is thought to be of the order of 3 to 4 per 1,000; that means between 3,000 to 4,500 preschool and school age children in Ireland will have a permanent hearing impairment, with potential consequences for education, communication, literacy, social and emotional development, and later employability.