Understanding Medical Problems

Guide To Choosing The Best Pediatric Hearing Aid For Your Child

Although most people associate hearing loss and the need for hearing aids with aging, children can also sometimes experience difficulties with hearing. Hearing difficulties can make it difficult to pay attention in school and play with friends – being unable to hear the lesson from the teacher or conversations between your friends is frustrating. Pediatric hearing aids amplify sounds in your child's environment, improving his or her ability to follow conversations and comprehend speech.

You will need to consult a pediatric audiologist to fit and tune the hearing aid to best support your child's hearing. The hearing aid needs to be molded to fit snugly into your child's ear canal to prevent sound leaking into the ear canal, which can cause audible feedback. The hearing aid also needs to be tuned so that quiet conversations are audible while noisy environments are not unbearably loud. The model, color, and style of the hearing aid will be up to you to select. Here's what you need to know about selecting the most suitable hearing aid for your child.

Choose a Behind-the-Ear Hearing Aid for a Secure Fit

Behind-the-ear (BTE) hearing aids are the type of hearing aid most suitable for growing children. These hearing aids attach securely behind the ear using a custom ear mold that your pediatric audiologist will create for you. They're much less likely to accidentally fall out and become lost than in-the-ear (ITE) hearing aids and the ear molds can be adjusted as your child grows and the shape of his or her ear changes. With other types of hearing aids, you would have to replace the entire hearing aid every time its shape needed to be changed, which is expensive.

Select a Hearing Aid With Noise-Canceling Technology for Best Audibility In Noisy Environments

For maximum audibility in noisy situations, choose a hearing aid with noise-canceling technology. These hearing aids use two microphones – one pointed forward and the other pointing towards the rear – to selectively amplify sounds that originate a short distance in front of your child and cancel out background noise. This is perfect for noisy classrooms and cafeterias, where it can become difficult to understand the teacher or a friend sitting next to you due to the high level of background noise.

Allow Your Child to Choose the Color and Style of the Hearing Aid

Your child may be embarrassed about wearing his or her hearing aid at school, especially since behind-the-ear hearing aids are highly visible. Pediatric hearing aids are available in a number of different colors and styles – allowing your child to pick out his or her favorite will reduce anxiety about wearing the hearing aid in public places. You can also customize the hearing aid further with stickers and hearing aid clips. Hearing aid clips attach the behind-the-ear hearing aid to your child's clothing, making it less likely that your child will lose the hearing aid accidentally while playing.

If you suspect that your child is suffering from hearing loss, it's important to consult with a pediatric audiologist as soon as possible – being unable to hear the teacher in a classroom setting can lead to declining grades or the school staff assuming that your child has behavioral problems and does not listen. Pediatric hearing aids are a great option to improve your child's hearing and improve his or her experience at school. By allowing your child to pick out his or her favorite hearing aid and ensuring that it has noise-canceling technology, you can make sure that the hearing aid is a great fit for the school environment.