When a person’s hearing is detectably impaired from typical hearing levels, they have hearing loss. Individuals with hearing loss may suffer from mild or moderate medical impairment. These people can hear some sounds but may struggle to make out words or hear noises at some frequencies. Some people with hearing loss may suffer severe or profound hearing loss. People with severe hearing loss cannot hear well enough to follow conversations, while those with profound hearing loss cannot hear any sounds.
In the United States, almost 15% of children between the ages of six and 19 have some hearing loss. Less than 1% of children are born with detectable hearing impairments, but children may experience hearing loss due to illness or exposure to toxins and loud sounds. If you know a child with hearing loss, there are some fantastic gifts you can get for them tailored to their specific needs and interests.
It takes time and consideration to choose the right gifts for kids. One way to show a child you’re thinking of them is to give them a personalized gift. Personalized gift options include capes, storybooks, and backpacks. The child may also enjoy creating a scrapbook with their art projects and favorite pictures. If you aren’t sure what present they’d like best, you can give them a gift certificate and help them choose and create their gift.
Children with hearing issues may feel discouraged and isolated at times. Celebrate their talents and abilities with gifts that focus on visual and tactile activities. Give the child a camera or sign them up for a photography class to learn to take photographs. They may also enjoy creating scrapbooks.
The child you know may also enjoy drawing, painting, pottery, or woodworking. Find an activity they enjoy and sign them up for classes or give them supplies. This is an excellent way of encouraging children to discover their talents and interests.
Special Alarm Clocks
Vibrating alarm clocks are designed to vibrate when it’s time to wake up. Vibrating alarm clocks typically connect to a person’s smartphone and are placed under their pillow. When the alarm goes off, people who have hearing loss can feel the vibrations, ensuring they don’t oversleep.
There are also alarm clocks that light up at the time the alarm is set for. Some alarm clocks with wake-up lights simulate sunrise and gradually brighten.
Headsets connected to the television can allow individuals to listen to the TV and control their sound levels. This is an excellent option for individuals with moderate hearing loss who can hear the TV but want to watch it with others who don’t need the volume turned up.
Learn Sign Language
If the child you know has a severe or profound hearing issue, they will rely on sign language and lip-reading to communicate. Take an American Sign Language (ASL) course to learn to communicate with them. If they’re still learning ASL themselves, you may want to sign up to take a course together. Making an effort to learn ASL is an effective way of giving this child the gift of communication and letting them know that what they have to say matters to you.
Refer to your local librarian or bookseller to learn about books for deaf and hard of hearing children. Some board books include sign language, while other books tackle hearing loss in their stories. Representation in stories can help children process their hearing impairment and provide encouragement.
A Hearing Test
If you suspect a child has suffered hearing loss, but they haven’t seen an audiologist, take them to an audiologist who offers kids hearing tests. A pediatric audiologist is a medical doctor who specializes in treating children with hearing and balance issues. Audiologists can administer tests, identify the cause of hearing loss, determine if their hearing can be restored, and develop a treatment plan.
In some cases, individuals can regain some or all of their hearing by using hearing aids. Others may need to have an obstruction removed. Children with permanent hearing loss may need to learn to compensate with other communication methods. Although a medical appointment may seem like an unusual gift, ensuring the child gets a comprehensive, accurate diagnosis can help them get the help they need to restore their hearing or address their hearing loss.
Do you have other suggestions for gifts for a child with hearing loss?
Share your thoughts and comments with us.
“PIN & SHARE”