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Why are hearing aids so important?

Photo: Make sure your child is wearing their hearing aids for as much of their waking hours as possible

Early and consistent use of hearing aids means that deaf children are more likely than ever to start school with similar speech and language levels to their hearing peers.

It’s important to make sure that your child is wearing their hearing aids for as much of their waking hours as possible.

When hearing pathways aren’t stimulated in response to sound early in life (also known as auditory deprivation) they don’t develop as well as they could. Babies and young children need auditory stimulation so that they have the best opportunity to develop their hearing pathways.

Speech development depends on hearing both your own speech and the speech of others. Children must be able to hear their own speech clearly to make clear speech sounds. By hearing the speech of others children copy sounds and words, and learn how to differentiate between sounds.

Incidental learning happens through overhearing – when children hear speech that isn’t directed at them. Overhearing helps children build vocabulary and gives them grammar and general knowledge.

Very young children gain about 90% of their knowledge about their world incidentally. Therefore deaf children may miss a significant amount of information and learning opportunities if they can’t overhear the world around them.