Australian Hearing is funded by the Australian Government to look after the hearing needs of children who have a permanent or long-term hearing loss. We work with children with all degrees of hearing loss from birth up to the age of 26 years.
To view our paediatric charter, click on the document at the bottom of this page.
Impact of hearing loss on children
The impact of hearing loss on a developing child is quite different from the effects of hearing loss that occurs in adulthood. Children use their hearing to learn about the world around them and develop communication skills. This in turn affects their relationships with family and friends, their education and their later employment.
Children with a moderate or greater degree of hearing loss in both ears will benefit from amplification to ensure they have optimal hearing for speech and language development. Current research suggests that children who are born with a moderate or greater sensorineural hearing loss in both ears are most likely to achieve the best outcomes if the hearing loss is diagnosed and intervention commences before they are six months of age.
The impact of a mild or unilateral hearing loss (hearing loss in one ear only) on a child's development is less easy to predict and is very dependent upon individual circumstances. In assessing the impact of hearing loss on toddlers and older children we take into account information from a number of sources including speech discrimination tests, parent and teacher questionnaires, language development and educational progress. However, this information is not easy to obtain for babies. For more information about babies, go to the Other Publications section.