I took Zoe, my 18 month old daughter, to have her hearing tested today. Her pediatrician reccommended having her hearing tested after listening to my concerns that she had a small spoken vocabulary and was not saying several of the hard consonant sounds that are often the first sounds a baby makes. I wasn't really convinced Zoe had a hearing problem, and neither was my pediatrician. But, she wanted to rule it out, and frankly, so did I.
So, off to the Dreyer Mercy Medical Campus we went this morning to see if Zoe's ears are hearing everything they are supposed to be. We met the doctor, a nice woman who immediately made me feel at ease. She said to test Zoe's hearing, Zoe and I would go into a boxlike room and sit down in a chair, with Zoe on my lap facing the window where we could see the doctor and she could see us. Then, she would play sounds in the room and she would watch to see if Zoe turned her head towards the sound. It was interesting sitting there with Zoe on my lap hoping she would turn her head each time I heard a sound. The first few times she did exactly what she was supposed to do. Then, she got used to the sound being made by the doctor and seemed to ignore it. The doctor switched her sound by calling Zoe's name and she immediately looked around. She had several more successes and then some very low tones started. She seemed to hear the tones some of the time, but not everytime. My heart just sank as I thought that she wasn't hearing everything she should. Sometimes she turned her head the wrong way, looking for a bunny that lit up and flashed when Zoe would turn her head towards the correct sound. Then I knew that at least she heard the sounds.
When the doctor opened the door to the box, she said Zoe did very well. Zoe is hearing voices right in the normal range for children her age, and she is just below normal for hearing tones for children her age. So, everything is fine.