My child was born deaf
You are not alone - learn how we can support you as you help your child along their hearing journey.
All parents want their child to be able to develop to their full potential. So discovering your child is deaf or has hearing loss can be devastating. You may be experiencing a huge range of emotions – from angry and confused to shocked, sad or overwhelmed - but you don’t have to feel alone.
You’re not alone
Hearing problems are common in children and there are families all over the world who understand what you’re going through. What’s more, you don’t have to feel helpless. With the right treatment, most children with hearing loss will hear again and grow up normally. Even those who are profoundly deaf can join the hearing world – attending mainstream schools, reading and speaking like their peers, talking on the phone and enjoying music.Your child really can experience life to its fullest. And by reaching out for information and support, you’re taking the first step towards their brighter and more expansive future.
Could a cochlear implant help my child?
If your child has severe to profound hearing loss and isn’t benefitting from hearing aids, then a cochlear implant could be an effective solution. You may realise your child doesn’t react to loud sounds or can’t detect where a sound is coming from. This could be the case even when they’re wearing hearing aids. Your baby’s babbling may not be developing into understandable speech. Perhaps your child avoids playing with other children or is falling behind with their speech and language developmental milestones. If you’ve noticed these or any other warning signs, make an appointment with an audiologist or health professional immediately. Candidacy depends on a variety of factors, and only the professionals can say for sure whether a cochlear implant can help your child.
Every moment matters
If you discover you child is a good candidate for a cochlear implant, there isn’t a moment to waste. The younger your child receives a cochlear implant, the easier it will be for him or her to learn to hear and speak. The first two years of your child's life are especially important in the development of their crucial language, speech and communication skills. Research shows that children who are fit with appropriate amplification before six months old can develop language skills on a par with their hearing peers1. Older children with hearing loss miss out on this chance to catch up with children who have normal hearing2-4.
An audiologist or other health professional can help you decide the best options for your child, both now and in the future. If you don’t already have someone to speak to, we can help you find a clinic where your child can have their hearing tested. It’s important the person you ultimately choose to look after your child’s hearing healthcare is someone both you and your child are completely comfortable with. They should also have enough knowledge in cochlear implants to help you make the most informed decision.
Please seek advice from your health professional about treatments for hearing loss. Outcomes may vary, and your health professional will advise you about the factors which could affect your outcome. Always read the instructions for use. Not all products are available in all countries. Please contact your local Cochlear representative for product information.
- American Speech and Hearing Association (ASHA) [online] Available from URL: http://www.asha.org/public/hearing/treatment/child_aids.htm
- Nicholas JG, Geers AE. Will they catch up? The role of age at cochlear implantation in the spoken language development of children with severe to profound hearing loss. J Speech Lang Hear Res 2007;50:1048-1062.
- Nicholas JG, Geers AE. Expected test scores for preschoolers with a cochlear implant who use spoken language. Am J Speech Lang Pathol 2008;17:121-138.
- Robbins AM, Osberger MJ, Miyamoto RT, Kessler KS. Language development in young children with cochlear implants. Adv Otorhinolaryngol 1995;50:160-166.