More options exist now because all states have passed some form of legislation requiring screening for potential hearing loss. A link to each state’s requirements can be found at www.infanthearing.org/states/index.html.
The keys to helping children attain their capacity to develop listening and spoken language and function fully in society are early identi cation and appropriate early intervention. In the eld of deaf education, we use the One/Three/Six guidelines. If a child is identi ed in the rst month of life as having a hearing loss and receives ampli cation by the third month, the child has the potential to develop listening and spoken language by the sixth month. At six months, a baby’s brain can be stimulated to receive sound — preferably under the guidance of an early childhood interventionist or an auditory verbal therapist. Babies who can bene t from a cochlear implant are able to undergo surgery as early as 12-14 months of age in the United States as controlled by the FDA.
The child’s hearing aid or cochlear implant should be checked frequently to make sure it is functioning as it should for the child to receive optimal listening through the hearing device. Additionally, families need help
to learn how to provide a language and listening rich environment so children have the opportunity to develop age appropriate spoken language. A listening environment stimulates the auditory brain centers where sound is processed. Access to sound during infancy is critical for the auditory brain centers to fully develop and for the
child to hear and make sense of the sounds of language. According to the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders, nine out of ten children born with hearing loss are born to hearing parents.
At Sunshine Cottage School for Deaf Children in San Antonio, Texas, we see children who were not identi ed during their newborn screening as well as children who developed hearing loss after birth. Children born with typical hearing may lose their hearing over time due to meningitis, medications, accidents involving the head, or other conditions.
© Sunshine Cottage School for Deaf Children 2015
Sunshine Cottage, a listening and spoken language school, is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Council on Accreditation and School Improvement, OPTION Schools, Inc., and is a Texas Education Agency approved non-public school. Sunshine Cottage is a 501(c) (3) nonprofit educational organization. We accept students regardless of sex, race, affiliation, disability, or national origin.