Hearing loss that has been present from birth often starts showing obvious signs when a child reaches the toddler years. Similarly, several common signs of hearing loss start manifesting their symptoms when a child is two or three. So, it's important to keep a close eye on your toddler. If you note any of these behaviors, you should make an appointment with a hearing specialist to have your little one's hearing tested.
By the age of 18 - 24 months, most toddlers have a vocabulary of about 20 words. By the time they reach the age of 3, they should be combining three or more words and forming simple sentences. If your child's speech development seems to be lagging behind that of his or her peers, it could be due to hearing loss.
Trouble Understanding Requests
Most children begin actively responding to their parents' requests by the time they are 18 - 24 months old. For example, you should be able to say "wave to mommy" or "put your arm up" and have your child respond appropriately. While failing to respond to certain requests may indicate that your child just has not grasped those specific requests yet, failing to respond to any request can indicate problems with hearing.
Ignoring The TV If It's Too Quiet
Your child should be able to hear the TV at the same volume you do. If you have the television at an appropriate volume that you can hear, but your toddler ignores the television until you turn it up higher, this could indicate hearing loss. You may also notice that your toddler does not respond to the music or sounds on the TV in the same way as his or her peers. For instance, other kids may sing along to certain songs, whereas your child does not.
Not Responding To Their Name
Babies learn their names and learn to respond to their names quite early on. When you say your child's name, they should look at you, smile, or otherwise respond. Assuming you have used your child's name when speaking to them since they were born, failing to respond to their name could indicate that they don't hear you well.
If you suspect that your toddler's hearing may not be perfect, get in touch with a hearing specialist. The sooner you begin treating and managing hearing loss and its causes, the better your child will learn and develop. For more information, contact companies like Desert Knolls Hearing Center.