Testing younger children’s hearing (0 to 3 years)
Automatic testing – Auditory brainstem response testing is used for babies up to a few months old. While the baby sleeps a clicking sound is played through headphones and electrodes that have been placed on the babies head measure electrical brain signals. This test becomes more difficult as children get older as they must be asleep for the test.
Visual reinforcement Audiometry – Is a behavioural test and can be done from when the baby sits on the caregiver’s knee and can turn their head (a few months old). A sound is played to one side of the child, when they turn their head toward it a puppet is showed to them in the window.
Younger children must be seen at a centre where there are 2 specialist paediatric audiologists and a room set up.
Children 0 – 5 years can be seen at the Auckland University – School of Audiology in Glen Innes. They sometimes have free appointments for children. Call (09) 923 9909 for an appointment.