Free Guide Helps Parents Spot Kid's Hearing Loss

Experts estimate over a million pediatric cases go untreated in U.S.

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SUNDAY, July 17, 2005 (HealthDay News) -- Hearing loss in young children too often goes unnoticed, reducing the chances for early intervention. Now, a free guide to help parents recognize hearing loss in children is available from the not-for-profit Better Hearing Institute.

A Guide to Your Child's Hearing, authored by Dr. Judith Gravel, director of the Center for Childhood Communication at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, tells parents how to recognize the signs of normal hearing in children at different developmental stages. It also outlines how to spot hearing problems and lists various treatment options.

"Our research shows one reason children with hearing problems aren't getting help is that some parents think that hearing aids will stigmatize their kids, embarrass them and cause people such as peers to treat them differently," Dr. Sergei Kochkin, executive director of the institute, said in a prepared statement.

"Parents often minimize their child's hearing loss despite strong evidence that even a mild hearing problem can cause behavioral and learning problems. If parents don't help their children, and themselves, to overcome the stigma associated with hearing problems, they are really shortchanging their kids," Kochkin said.

The institute estimates that more than a million American children have undetected or untreated hearing loss.

More information

Here's where you can download a free copy of A Guide to Your Child's Hearing.

SOURCE: Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, news release, July 12, 2005

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