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Hearing Aids for Children

Hearing aids can help with many types of hearing loss in children of all ages. An audiologist can assist in finding the best hearing aid for your child. Audiologists are health care professionals who provide patient-centered care in the prevention, identification, diagnosis, and evidence-based treatment of hearing, balance, and other disorders for people of all ages. Visit ASHA ProFind to locate a professional in your area.

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About Hearing Aids for Children

Hearing sounds and words helps children learn to talk and understand. Children with hearing loss may have trouble developing speech, language, and social skills. They may have trouble learning in school and may have difficulty communicating with friends. There are many effects of hearing loss on development.

It is important to have your child’s hearing tested by an audiologist and get them help early. If needed, an audiologist can help find the best hearing aid(s) for your child. Your child may need a hearing aid in one or both ears.

Getting hearing aids early can help your child develop communication and social skills. Even babies and very young children can wear hearing aids. Your audiologist will talk to you about your child’s needs and help find the best hearing aid(s) to fit those needs. Not every hearing aid will work for every child.

There are different types of hearing aids. The behind-the-ear, or BTE, hearing aid is the most common for young children because

  • it can attach to different earmold types,
  • the earmold is easy to replace as your child grows,
  • the earmold is easy to handle and clean,
  • it works with many types of hearing loss, and
  • the earmolds are soft and safe for small ears.

Other styles are more common for adults and older children.

Getting Your Child Used to Hearing Aids

It takes time to get used to wearing hearing aids. Your child may need help putting and keeping the hearing aid(s) on and adjusting them. You can start by putting the hearing aid(s) on your child while you are doing something fun. Gradually increase how long they wear them until they can wear them for the whole day.

Hearing aids are easy to lose. There are headbands and special tape that can help to keep the hearing aids in place. Your child’s audiologist may show you how to use hearing aid clips or how to pin the hearing aid to a piece of clothing. Your audiologist may also recommend aural (re)habilitation services, hearing assistive technology systems, or community resources to help your child get the most out of their hearing aid(s).

Taking Care of Your Child’s Hearing Aids

Your audiologist will teach you how to use and take care of the hearing aids. Some children may be able to adjust and care for their own hearing aid(s).

You should check your child’s hearing aid(s) regularly to make sure they are working correctly. To keep your child’s hearing aid(s) working properly, it is important to

  • check the batteries often and keep spare or rechargeable batteries on hand and in a safe place,
  • clean your child’s hearing aid(s) according to your audiologist’s instructions,
  • keep your child’s hearing aid(s) dry, and
  • talk to your child’s audiologist about how to do listening checks on your child’s hearing aid(s).

Resources

This list does not include every website on this topic. ASHA does not endorse the information on these sites.

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