Children With Developmental Challenges 3(2+1)

Lesson 15 : Identification of Children With Hearing Impairment


Two hearing tests are often used to screen babies. In both tests, no activity is required from your child other than lying still.

  • Otoacoustic emissions (OAE) tests can show whether parts of the ear respond properly to sound. During this test, a sponge earphone is placed into the ear canal. The ear is stimulated with sound, and the "echo" is measured. The echo is found in everyone who hears normally. If there is no echo, it could indicate a hearing loss.
  • Auditory brain stem response (ABR) tests check how the brain stem (the part of the nerve that carries sound from the ear to the brain) and the brain respond to sound. During this test, your child wears earphones, and electrodes are placed on the head and ears. A mild sedative may be given to help keep your child calm and quiet during the test. The nurse or doctor sends sounds through the earphones and measures the electrical activity in your child's brain when he or she should be hearing.

    Older Infants and Toddlers: Two screening tests recommended by the American Speech Language Hearing Association are:

  • Visual reinforcement audiometry (VRA) is highly recommended. Whenever the child looks toward a sound source, she is rewarded. (Six months to two years of age).
  • Conditioned play audiometry (CPA). The child performs a task (puts a block on the table, touches a toy, etc.) every time a sound is heard. (Two to three years of age).
Last modified: Wednesday, 11 April 2012, 10:23 AM