Good hearing is essential for speech and language development and plays an important part in a child’s social and emotional growth. It is important that parents are aware of their child’s hearing from the moment their child is born.
A child’s hearing can be affected by many things. Some newborns run a high risk of hearing loss due to hereditary or prenatal complications including rubella, syphilis, low birth weight, and meningitis. Toddlers and preschool children may acquire hearing loss with earaches, colds, running ears, upper respiratory infections, or allergies.
Signs of Hearing Loss
- Does not pay attention or react to loud noises around the house
- Has had frequent ear infections and /or fluid draining from the ears
- Has trouble locating sounds
- Speaks loudly
- Has unclear speech
- Stops early babbling
If you are concerned about or suspect a hearing problem, or if you notice any of the signs listed above, see your doctor as soon as you can and ask about a hearing test.
The BC Early Hearing Program
BC Early Hearing Program through the Abbotsford Public Health Unit provides newborn hearing screening, diagnosis and intervention upon birth. Service open to all babies in BC, the test is covered by BC Medical (MSP). Screening conducted in hospital before baby and mother are discharged, or at local public health unit with a hearing clinic. The Health Unit provides service for entry-level school age screening and sales, fitting, and maintenance of hearing equipment and assistive listening devices. They also provide eye and ear examinations and vision and hearing screening services to children of school age.
Abbotsford Public Health Unit
Hours of operation: Mon - Fri, 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
For more information on having your newborn's hearing checked visit Fraser Health's webpage.
For a complete list of local audiologists, refer to the ‘Audiologists’ and ‘Hearing Analysis’ sections of the Yellow Pages.