Untreated Unilateral Hearing Loss & Delays

Families Need To Know: Untreated Unilateral Hearing Affects Later Development

(Reuters Health) – It’s important to identify and treat newborns and young children with deafness in one ear. Leaving one-sided deafness untreated leads to reorganization of developing hearing pathways in the brain, and has been tied to poorer speech and language development, poorer vocabulary, simpler sentence structure than their normal-hearing peers, and poor academic performance, the authors write in Pediatrics, online June 8.  Children with unilateral hearing are automatically eligible for Birth to Three because of the possible serious impact on their development.

“One of the main issues is lack of information…The implications of unilateral hearing loss/deafness have been historically underestimated by professionals and this has reflected on how they counsel parents.” The results of untreated unilateral deafness may not appear until educational, social and emotional concerns become clear later in life.

To read the full article, go to http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/846230_print

Be sure to let your families know that their choice to enroll in Birth to Three for support with managing their child’s hearing/deafness can make a real difference!

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