Teen Hearing Loss: Does Your Teen Have It?

Posted on: 25 August 2016

If your teen ignores you, you might think that they're being disrespectful or going through a phase. Your teen may actually have a hearing problem. Although hearing loss is often associated with the elderly and small children, it can also affect teens. Here's more information about teen hearing loss and what you can do help your loved one get through it.

Why Can't Your Teen Hear You?

Teen hearing loss can develop from a number of things, including listening to loud music, puncturing the eardrum, or experiencing a severe sinus or ear infection. These issues can cause keep your loved one from hearing low, high, or both types of sounds. Hearing loss can be potentially dangerous for your teen, especially if they drive or walk to school.

For example, your teen may not hear a car approach as they enter a crosswalk, or your loved one may not hear the close or distant sounds of encroaching emergency vehicles if they drive. Unless your teen is extra vigilant or learns how to use their other senses, driving and walking on the road may become dangerous for them.

In addition, hearing loss may affect your teen's speech. Your teen may begin to say words differently because they can no longer hear certain sounds. Children who have hearing problems can't pick up soft letter sounds, such as "s" or "f." They tend to leave out these letter sounds when they speak. If your loved one didn't have problems with saying or hearing soft sounds as a child, you might not associate hearing loss with how they speak now. 

Getting your teen help may be one of the best options to keep them safe now.

How Do You Help Your Loved One?

One of the things you might do to find out if your teen has a hearing problem is have their ears examined by a hearing specialist, or audiologist. The exam may include using a series of special tests to locate hearing discrepancies in each ear, such as the pure tone audiometry. The tests tell the specialist which part of the ear is damaged. 

An audiologist may also look inside your teen's ears to see if they have any damage to their eardrums. Eardrums receive vibration of sounds, which allow your teen to hear the world around them. If the eardrums rupture, your teen may lose the ability to make out different sounds. The sounds may become muffled or "drowned" out. In some cases, surgery can repair damaged eardrums. However, most individuals wear hearing aids and other devices to help them hear better.

If your loved one has an infection, a specialist may treat it with antibiotics and other medications. If the medications don't bring back your loved one's hearing completely, hearing aids may help in this case as well. A specialist can go over the best treatment options for your teen during the exam.

For more details about your teen's hearing, contact an audiologist today.

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