Infant hearing tests - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 10 Old 01-17-2013, 09:37 PM - Thread Starter
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The state of Oregon sent me paperwork because I haven't had an Infant Hearing Test on DD and she's 7 weeks old. I think she hears fine, she responds to me and I don't want to have more testing than needed. How important is this test? What are your experiences?

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#2 of 10 Old 01-18-2013, 04:25 AM
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The hearing test is non-invasive and babies usually sleep through it. It can detect congenital hearing loss (even partial) so that treatment and services can be started before you would start seeing evidence of hearing loss in the child. I think it's one of those things that have minimal risks and a potential large benefit.

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#3 of 10 Old 01-18-2013, 07:06 AM
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I agree with PP.  Babies start learning speech in utero, so a delay in diagnosis and treatment can have a serious impact on speech and language abilities later.  There don't seem to be any drawbacks to getting the test other than maybe the time and travel to get there.

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#4 of 10 Old 01-18-2013, 06:05 PM
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While I definitely agree with what the previous two posters said about the benefits outweighing the risks, IMHO, the hearing tests are not that great. First of all, it has to be dead silent and the little ear pieces have to be on just right. In other words, there are lots of things that can generate a false fail. We had to take the hearing test over 5 times. I knew my DD could hear me, but we kept going back to get the official "pass" and really wish I would have just listened to my instincts and not forked over money to have some test tell me what I already knew. I will say that DH is a sound engineer and musician and he was furious with the testing methods, but was also equally anxious to get an official positive. So I guess what I'm saying is just realize that your LO can fail the test (many times) and still have perfect hearing. This was my experience.

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#5 of 10 Old 01-18-2013, 11:23 PM
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There's no reason not to do the test. You can likely do it while holding her and nursing; we have a pilot program at the birth center where I apprentice and we encourage moms to nurse baby during the test so that they'll be quiet.

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#6 of 10 Old 01-19-2013, 02:53 PM
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Definitely consider doing it--it's totally painless/non-invasive/non-stressful, and will give you a lot of peace of mind.  (Yes, you may get inconsistent results sometimes--but it's still better than potentially missing something that will cause HUGE problems if untreated.  If you don't want to make a special trip to do it (and who does, with an infant), just try to schedule it for a time you're already doing a pediatric appointment and kill two birds with one stone.

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#7 of 10 Old 01-20-2013, 02:43 AM
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#8 of 10 Old 01-20-2013, 03:12 AM
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If you do decide to do the test, do it as young as you can! I didn't know it was 'required' until dd2 was older and we couldn't get any result because she wouldn't go to sleep in the lab. Too many new things to look at!

Her hearing is fine but it was a hassle sitting there 3x with my boob hanging out while dd laughed and grabbed at the wires. Definitely would've been easier with a sleepy newborn.
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#9 of 10 Old 01-20-2013, 01:34 PM
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I didn't do it when DS1 was a newborn and then had to attempt to do it with an older child who had speech delays and who wouldn't sit still or fall asleep in the lab. dizzy.gifSo not fun. I promptly did it with DS2. There is also a child in DS1's PK who is profoundly deaf, they elected out of the hearing screen and didn't realize deafness until he was close to one. I elect out of all almost all testing but hearing screens is one that there is really no good reason not to get. 

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#10 of 10 Old 01-20-2013, 01:44 PM
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When I lived in Atlanta, one of the big universities did them for free. The babies sat in my lap and I wore headphones so my body language didn't give anything away. I had both babies tested. This is key to your child's learning to talk and ability to process language in a timely fashion. I don't see why anyone would refuse.
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