Screen Your child's speech and hearing
Clearly, a child who has problems with hearing or speaking will have problems learning.
Children should be screened by a speech/language pathologist or have a hearing test by an audiologist if parents notice problems.
Screening is recommended if:
- For a 3-year-old - The child does not follow directions, does not speak in sentences, cannot be understood 75 percent of the time, seems to day dream often or does not understand questions beginning with who, what or when.
- For a 4-year-old - The child does not understand conversation, does not use complete sentences that are part of a meaningful conversation, seems to daydream often or cannot be understood 90 percent of the time.
- For a 5-year-old - The child is not 100 percent understandable, does not use complete sentences that are part of a meaningful conversation, does not use sentences that are in the right order when relating events and does not make sense.
- At ages 6 to 8 - Language does not make sense, the child cannot speak fluently, does not understand simple sentences and cannot retell or make up simple stories.
- At ages 8 to 10 - The child has problems learning during activities that require listening, cannot explain how things work, cannot express feelings, join in conversations with peers, introduce topics, stay with topics or end conversations.
- At ages 10 to 12 - The child does not use or understand humor.
- In the teen years - The child does not use communication to relate events, describe events or to socialize.
Other general signs and risk factors for hearing loss or speech and language problems include:
- The outer ear is abnormal
- There is a family history of hearing loss
- The child had a head injury or skull fracture
- The child has a cleft palate or other syndrome associated with a hearing loss
- The child seems overly attentive to visual stimuli
- The child's behavior is hard to manage
- The child's voice sounds odd, for example nasal-sounding or hoarse
- The child cannot follow the teacher in class
- The child is described as distracted, a daydreamer, inattentive and cannot learn
Your physician may refer you to the Ear, Nose and Throat Clinic if your child requires specialty care.