It is important to assess the hearing status of a child who has speech and language problems or behavioral/development problems, as this is potentially a reversible cause. Another common cause to exclude is tongue tie.
Hearing loss or impairment is often missed in children and it can affect the child’s speech and language development, and may present with behavioral and learning problems.
An ENT doctor will be able to examine the ear with an otoscope or microscope to assess the condition of the ear canal and ear drums. The ENT doctor will then do an age appropriate hearing test to check the hearing status of your child. A hearing test can be done as early as infancy.
Depending on the cause and severity of the hearing loss, various treatment options are available.
Tongue tie is a condition where there is a band that bottom of the tip of the tongue to the floor of the mouth. This restricts the movement of the tongue. This can affect the way the child eats or drinks, and in young babies, it can interfere with breast-feeding. It can also affect speech and pronunciation in older children. This condition can be treated with a simple procedure to release the band.