Hearing Tests for Children aged 6 months – 2 years

Otoacoustic emissions

Otoacoustic emissions testing is very quick and takes just a few minutes and can be used on children of all ages. It involves putting a soft tip into your child’s ear while they are quietly playing or stilling. It measures a robust response from a healthy inner ear and is useful as a screening tool to rule out a significant hearing loss (greater than 35dB) as part of a battery of tests and information.

Visual Reinforcement Audiometry

This hearing test can be carried out on children with a developmental age of 6 months to 2 years and requires 2 Audiologists. It involves playing a sound through a loudspeaker while your child is sat on your lap or in his/her own chair. As your child turns his/her head in response to the sound, they are rewarded visually (e.g. moving puppet or video picture). At first the test is carried out using both ears, then the test can be carried out using one ear at a time using headphones or insert earphones.

Tympanometry

This test involves putting a soft tip into your child’s ear. They will experience a slight change in pressure in their ears. Tympanometry measures the ear canal volume, pressure and degree of movement of the eardrum. The results are interpreted as part of a battery of tests to assess the health of the ear drum and middle ear and can be used to monitor glue ear, grommets or perforations, for example.