Kids’ Listening Assessments: A Guide for Parents


You have noticed that your child is inattentive and doesn’t react when called? Or, he/she talks louder than usually and mispronounces certain words. Or maybe, he/she has become overactive or grumpy and starts withdrawing from family and friends. If you have noticed such behaviors of your kid for several times in a row, this might be a warning sign indicating that it is time for a hearing test.

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Unfortunately hearing loss often happens gradually and unnoticed. However, this doesn’t mean that this is something you should panic about. If you have any concern about the hearing ability of your child, you should find a good audiology clinic and appoint a hearing assessment.

Kid’s  listening assessments are performed by qualified professionals who have broad knowledge in this matter. In order to help you familiarize yourself with the hearing assessment procedure in general, we’ve made a simple guide for parents. If you want to know what you should expect at the audiologist’s office, read on. Here’s what you need to know about the different types of hearing assessments in children.

Behavioral Observation Audiometry

This is a hearing assessment procedure used for testing the hearing ability of children that are from 0 to 7 moths old, or older children with certain disability that impedes them to react to the sounds they hear. The behavioral observation audiometry or also referred to as BOA includes observation of children’s reaction to high, mid ad low frequency noisemakers. At this age, kids usually react to sounds with surprising face gestures, moving with the hands head or other parts of the body or by waking from sleep.

Visual Reinforcement Orientation Audiometry

This type of audiology tests are performed for children from seven months to three years. During a visual reinforcement orientation audiometry test, the kid is put in a quiet room with a speaker on which sounds with different frequencies are played. The kid’s hearing ability is assessed on the base of his/her reaction to the sounds and the time when he/she turns towards the speaker.

Play Audiometry

As the name implies, this audiometry procedure includes play “rules” in the hearing assessment procedure. This type of hearings assessments are performed for children older than two years. In fact, this hearing test is similar to the pure-tone testing which is performed for testing adult’s hearing ability. What’s common for this type of hearing assessments is that it tests person’s hearing ability on sounds with gradually decreasing frequency. The purpose of the play audiometry test is to show what is the minimum sound frequency that the child can perceive

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