Vision And Hearing Screening
The 5 senses, such as hearing, sight, smell, and taste, allow your child to experience the world. Sadly, however, babies and young children can suffer from hearing and vision loss, which will not only negatively affect their development but will also possibly make them unsafe and at risk for accidents and injuries.
The best way to effectively diagnose and manage vision and hearing loss, whether partial or complete, is to schedule regular screening appointments with your doctor. The medical team at Pediatrics of Sugar Land is fully qualified to offer screening services. The practice is equipped with the latest and top-notch technology for a thorough check-up and a precise diagnosis. Schedule your appointment today at pediatrics of Sugar Land.
* This service is only provided for established patients if you are a new patient you will need to transfer to the office first.
Vision and Hearing Q&A
Why would my child have vision and hearing problems?
Vision and hearing problems are common during childhood. Some causes are congenital, which means that they are present at birth. Such causes include genetic diseases, and eye or ear malformations caused by intrauterine infections.
Other times, hearing and vision problems are acquired, and will appear after birth and as the child grows older. Examples of acquired hearing and vision loss include myopia, also called near-sightedness, or auditory damage caused by a ruptured eardrum.
What are the symptoms of hearing or vision loss?
Vision and hearing problems often go unnoticed in babies and young infants. Sometimes, the family may notice that the child is not as reactive to their environment as their older sibling was at their age.
Family members may also get suspicious if the child isn’t startled by loud noises, doesn’t answer when their name is called, or doesn’t grab things handed to them.
Vision and hearing loss are often diagnosed in children of school age. This can happen either as a result of a systematic school screening test or if the child displays signs such as difficulty socializing with other kids or poor school performance.
What are the consequences of hearing and vision loss?
If a child suffers from vision loss in one eye, the brain begins to ignore, and eventually suppress, all the signals it receives from the impaired eye. This causes a complication known as amblyopia, commonly called lazy eye. Hearing problems on the other hand can interfere with the development of speech and language.
In general, both hearing and vision problems make the child unsafe in their environment, as they are not fully aware of any surrounding dangers since they can’t hear or see properly.
School performance is also affected, with many children suffering from learning difficulties. Children with hearing or vision loss also have poor social skills. This will not only affect the child’s self-esteem and mental health but will also expose them to stress and sadly make them an easy prey for bullies.
When should my child receive vision screenings?
Before the age of five, several vision screening consultations are advised. Right after birth, at three months, at six months, at three years, and at five years old. Additional screening appointments may be scheduled if your child failed a previous screening or if they display specific vision loss symptoms.
When should my child receive hearing screenings?
Ideally, all children should receive a preliminary hearing screening test by the time they are one month old. A full screening test is advised at the age of three months if the initial test conducted at one-month-old was not conclusive. Longer and more detailed screening tests are conducted around the age of two and a half years old.
How are screening tests conducted?
In general, screening tests are simple and pain-free evaluations. Different versions exist. they are specific and adapted to the different stages of childhood.
A regular hearing screening test will consist of different evaluations. These include:
– Automatic auditory response of the brainstem.
– Behavioral audiometry evaluation.
– Otoacoustic emissions.
A regular vision screening test will also consist of different examinations. These include:
– Papillary response test.
– Test to fix and follow.
– Lea symbols test.
– Test search.
What are the benefits of vision and hearing screenings?
Early vision and hearing screenings hold many benefits:
– An early diagnosis before the stage of complications and irreparable damage.
– Increased safety and awareness of the child’s environment.
– Improved communication skills and healthy social interaction with other children.
– A healthy self-esteem.
– Better school performance and less learning disability.
Hearing and vision problems often go unnoticed, only being diagnosed at late stages or in case of complications. At that point, medical management is more complex, often requiring long and expensive treatment plans, and even then, the damage already done is sometimes irreparable.
For these reasons and more, all children should be screened for hearing or vision problems, whether they display symptoms or not. Respecting the hearing and vision screenings schedule is the best way to ensure an early diagnosis and therefore an early and effective treatment.