Our ability to communicate relies heavily on our healthy hearing. Hearing loss can be due to a range of conditions and in most cases can be treated effectively.
In order for us to hear sound the signal needs to pass through the structures of the ear. These include the external ear, middle ear and inner ear. A problem in any of these structures will lead to hearing loss in that ear. The most common cause of hearing loss is fluid in the middle ear following a cold. Swimmer’s ear or an infection of the external ear can also lead to pain and hearing loss when there is significant inflammation of the canal.
Hearing services at hospitals test babies for hearing loss soon after birth using the SWISH test. SWISH is the Statewide Infant Screen for Hearing. Sometimes children pass this test but then develop hearing loss in early childhood. We endeavour to pick up these issues early on so we can give children the best chance at learning and social development.