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First Year

Infant Health

Infant hearing

It is important to know if your baby can hear. Your baby will be screened in the hospital before you both go home. A very small earphone is placed in your baby's ear and soft sounds are played through it. The ear's response to these sounds is measured and recorded. The entire screening takes just a few minutes, and will give you results right away.

Screening result is either ‘pass’ or ‘refer’.

Your baby has passed the newborn screening:

Most babies will receive a pass result, which means their hearing is fine at that time. In a very small number of babies that pass the screening, a hearing loss may develop at a later age.

It is important to watch for signs of hearing loss as your baby grows.
Your baby has a refer result from the first hearing screening:

When the screening result is refer, your baby will need a second screening. Most babies who receive a refer result have perfectly normal hearing. A slight cold or stuffiness, earwax, other debris in ear, or even noise in the room are the most likely cause for the refer result.

All babies with a refer result must have a second screening with a different machine. If your baby needs another screening, an appointment will be made for you in your community. Make sure you keep the appointment.

Early hearing screening is important:

Screening is the first step in finding babies who are deaf or hard of hearing.

There are many services in place to help these infants. The earlier they are identified, the more time there is to take advantage of these services.

With support, children who are deaf or hard of hearing will grow up learning language and communicating just as children who hear.

Have a specific question?

Region of Peel – Public Health
Monday to Friday 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Caledon residents call free of charge at 905-584-2216
to speak with a Public Health Nurse

Call Erinoak Kids to speak with a Service Coordinator if your baby did not receive a screening in the hospital
905-855-2690, Extension 228

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Revised: Thursday May 02 2019

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