Treatment of Hearing Loss in Children

Which are the recommended methods for treating hearing loss in children?

In such cases, hearing aids are fitted in both ears in order to achieve appropriate auditory enhancement, better directional perception and additional improvement of speech discernment of up to 20%, contributing to further development of speech.

The designated hearing aids must feature special internal settings (set by the Hearing Aid Dispenser), a wide range of frequencies, thin and anatomical design and, finally, simple user-controlled settings.

Surgical treatment of hearing loss in children is also an option. It depends on the type, the severity of the case as well as the overall mental and physical development of the child.

Cases treated with surgery include chronic otitis media, secretory otitis media (accumulation of fluid in the middle ear), and varying degrees of dysplasia of the outer or middle ear.

The cochlear implant is an electronic device that bypasses the patient’s entire sound-processing system as well as the cochlea itself, directly stimulating the ganglion cells of the auditory nerve. Implantation is followed by a long-term rehabilitation regime (18-24 months and in some cases up to 4 years), involving otolaryngologists, audiologists, technical specialists, speech therapists and teachers for deaf students.

The ultimate goal is for children to use speech as a primary means of communication for five years following implantation, and their speech to be understood by the average interlocutor. The hearing aid should be fitted in all cases of unilateral or bilateral hearing loss, starting from the age of 6 months as well as a temporary measure in cases such as bilateral ear dysplasias, which will be treated at an older age surgically.