Hearing Impairment support from birth

In the world of hearing impairment, children are only considered for cochlear implantation when there is clear evidence that a child’s hearing aids are not meeting their needs.
All newborn children have a hearing screening. The Hearing Impairment Team is involved with children and families from as early as 2 weeks old. Early Identification of deafness means early amplification.

 

Challenge

A pupil currently in Year 2 has a profound hearing loss on both sides. They had bilateral (both ears) cochlear implants at aged 1 year 4 months.
Due to infections in the one side (an uncommon occurrence) the child had one implant removed, which left them with a new hearing system in one ear, this was the child’s only access to sound.

 

Approach

The child’s parents made the bold decision to go ahead with the 2nd ear cochlear implant, following the first ear rejecting the implant six times.
The team supported the child’s parents through the process of re-implantation. The team also supported the child with early language development.
The Hearing Impairment Teams early involvement ensures support for early language development progresses on a par with hearing peers.
The Hearing Impairment Teams work to track and scaffold language development in the early years by providing structured language opportunities.

Language opportunities include:

  • Supporting families in home – with language development and modelling good practice.
  • Supporting transition into early years settings
  • Support for the setting
  • Specialist HI TA supporting child’s development in school


Outcomes

Audiology
The pupil is now successfully implanted on both sides and uses their amplification successfully and hearing equipment independently.

Education
The pupil is now working at age related expectations for writing and maths and above for reading. The pupil is very positive about school and loves everything about school – especially writing, cooking and swimming, in which they wear one implant to swim with special waterproof kit to keep her speech processor dry.

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