Many parents might complain that their children don't listen to them. Part of this is probably your children simply pretending not to hear you when you call out to them, along with the sometimes distracted nature of being a child—not hearing you because their attention is focussed elsewhere. But what about when the issue seems to be an actual tangible problem with your child's hearing? Hearing loss in children is of course something that is deeply concerning for all parents. How can you tell if it's an issue that your child is facing, and what can you do about it?
It might be that your child seems to not be able to hear you when you're in the same room, speaking directly to them. It might take a couple of tries in order to get their attention. You should also consider any recent school reports—anything that indicates that their academic progress seems to be slowing down. Is is possible that they are not thriving at school because they are unable to correctly hear their teacher? You might also notice that they watch the television at an inordinately loud volume. Naturally these issues are hardly conclusive, but they might warrant further investigation.
Your First Port of Call
Take your child to your GP if you are at all concerned. Your GP will be able to rule out a number of causes, and treat many that might be evident. It might be that there's a buildup of wax in the ear canal, which can be immediately (and sometimes messily) syringed. They will also be able to diagnose an inner ear infection which might be causing the hearing issues and then prescribe antibiotics as necessary. If there is not an immediately obvious cause for the hearing issues, then your GP will likely refer you to an audiologist.
The best way forward will depend on the actual diagnosis. Hearing aids are generally a viable solution, and often the only necessary one—although a cochlear implant might be suggested in the event of a degenerative issue in order to avoid total hearing loss. This is often coupled with speech therapy in order to allow your child to still enunciate clearly. Of course, this is not an exhaustive list and there are many different types of treatments (and hearing aids) available.
Sometimes hearing loss in children is temporary and easy to solve. But when the issue might be more serious, it's important to take action as quickly as possible.