Recognising Hearing Impairment | Telethon Speech & Hearing
A young boy at primary school showing signs of hearing impairment or lack of attention

Hearing loss, or lack of attention?

It is estimated that the rate of hearing impairment in primary school children in Australia lies between 3.4 and 12.8 per cent.*

Children use their hearing to learn about the world around them and develop communication skills. This in turn, influences their relationships with family and friends, their education and future employment.

Hearing loss isn’t always easy to recognise, but there are ways parents and teachers can determine if a child may need to have their ears checked by a health professional such as an Audiologist.

Signs of hearing loss

For infants

  • Excessive crying
  • Disrupted sleep
  • Feeding problems
  • Rubbing ears
  • Ear discharge
  • Slow development of speech

For pre-schoolers

  • Delayed speech and language
  • Frustration
  • Face watching to understand speech
  • Lagging behind others in play
  • Gesturing instead of speaking
  • Missing or not understanding instructions

For school-aged children

  • Speaking louder than others
  • Day-dreaming
  • Listening to music or the TV at a high volume
  • Difficulty understanding in noisy environments
  • Past history of ear infections

While hearing is often checked at birth through newborn screenings, hearing loss can occur at any age, particularly following infectious illnesses.

Even a mild or partial hearing loss on a developing child can be significant, so it’s important to have your child’s hearing checked regularly. If you have concerns with your child’s hearing, speech or language contact Telethon Speech & Hearing today.

Call 9387 9888 or click here to request an appointment with us online. Locations available in Wembley and Cockburn.


*Reference: Seong Min Robyn Choi, Joseph Kei & Wayne J. Wilson (2017) Rates of hearing loss in primary school children in Australia: A systematic review, Speech, Language and Hearing, 20:3, 154-162, DOI: 10.1080/2050571X.2016.1259199