Hearing test

A month ago, I wrote about Tyler’s glue ear and said we were waiting to get a hearing test done.

Unfortunately, the waiting list for Starship Audiology was 2-3 months, and our GP said we should not wait that long. So we decided to go private, and made an appointment at Dilworth Audiology in Remuera. It cost $90, but it will be covered under medical insurance.

Tyler had his hearing test last Friday. It was a “Play Test” and involved playing lots of different games with the Audiologist (Abby, who he took an immediate liking to).
He did so well! He surprised me, actually. I was sure he was having a fair amount of difficulty hearing, but it turns out his hearing is pretty good.

The first test was a real eye-opener. He was given a box with about 20 different toys inside. He had to name each one (which he did perfectly) and then Abby would say “where’s the ball, Tyler?” and he had to find the ball and put it back in the box. But each time she asked him a question, she did various things to make it harder for him to hear. She looked away from him, covered her mouth, mumbled, whispered, and used high and low tones. But he heard every single one, with no hesitation at all! I was pleasantly surprised.
For the next few tests, he had to wear headphones and whenever he heard a sound, he had to immediately place a shape onto a board. This was to test each ear individually, at various volume levels and frequencies. He didn’t freak out about wearing the headphones, or the little vibrating earpiece which tested his inner ear. Again, he did really well, and Abby was most impressed with him!

After the test, which took about 40 min, Abby gave us the results. She said hearing in the left ear is totally normal, and his tympanogram on that side was quite good. A complete change from the last one, which was totally flat. It means that it has improved (i.e. the fluid has drained away) on it’s own. However, he does have a small amount of low-frequency hearing loss in his right ear. That ear had a flat tymp, which means there is still fluid there. Abby did say that it could possibly improve with time as well.

We’re so grateful that things are not as bad as we originally thought. I believe that our prayers have made a difference, and it’s definitely not just a coincidence that there has been an improvement. Thanks, Lord!

As a result of this test, we can now wait a bit longer before making the decision about more surgery. Tyler’s hearing is not badly affected, so waiting is an appropriate course of action. Hopefully things will improve even more, and the grommets will not be necessary. While we wait, we’ll keep on praying and believing for a complete restoration of his hearing.

*Edited to add*
Tyler has had grommets put in before (at 18 months of age) so we’ve been through the whole surgery thing. I know it’s a very quick & simple operation, but we’d rather not subject him to it again unless we absolutely have to. He’s only 3 but has already had 2 operations under general anaesthesia, and I’m not in a hurry for him to have another one.

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22 thoughts on “Hearing test

  1. Great to hear that Tyler did well in his hearing test. We had the mobile early childhood tester around at kindy a week or so ago and our Mr needs retesting… too much wax or something. To tell the truth, he has one really waxy ear…. I’ve been thinking of following it up.
    Like Dianna says, the op if needed is a relatively simple and routine one. Two lots of friends have had it with no trouble whatsoever… reassuring if it is needed.

  2. I’m glad Tyler doesn’t have to have surgery again. I know what it is like to have one put under – not fun. I often have my kids pray for things they want then watch as God answers their prayers. I think God answers kids faster then he does us adults.

    Love the fireworks.

  3. Oh Hannah, that is wonderful news! What a relief and yay for no surgery for now. As a mom facing that very soon for Jack I know what you mean about that :-)

    Yay, yay, yay!

  4. OH – what wonderful news! What a relief. I’ll keep up the thoughts and prayers and hopefully things will continue to improve. Yay!!! Hugs all around! :)

  5. Fantastic news! What a huge relief for you! I understand about the op stuff. Any general anaesthetic small or large is a worry for parents. After all they are our babies. I have not yet had to experience it and don’t look forward to that time at all.

  6. That’s great to know that his hearing has not gotten worse. I must admit surgery twice already is not fun for little boys or their parents. Hope things improve.

  7. Wonderful news! I know how you feel, Madelynn had to have hearing tests as well. Right before she turned 3, so close to the same age as Tyler.

    I was so happy that she passed with flying colors! Her ears were fine, she just didn’t speak and we wanted to make sure she could hear. She ended up with a speech therapist for awhile and now we can’t shut her up! LOL

  8. That is good news and fingers crossed for all of you that the fluid does improve with time. What an excellent way of trying their hearing without them knowing. Well done to Tyler and Mum too as these things are real endurance tests.

  9. Oh thats fabulous news Hannah! You really don’t mind paying to go private when its your kids and then you get such good news. I hope in time he has full hearing, my nephew had similar problems with grommets and glue ear as a toddler and at 14 he is blessed (I say that because of the inherited hearing loss that runs in my family) will perfect hearing.

  10. WEll, that’s good news Hannah! I’m glad it wasn’t as bad as it could have been.

    I agree with you about the surgery thing…who wants to see their kids go through that?

  11. Hey Hannah… it turns out that Luke has glue ear, too! When he was younger he wouldn’t let anyone near his ears in order to test them (typanogram), let alone cut his hair around that area. It’s only lately that we’ve had success in getting him to cooperate… and at the 3rd visit to the audiologist in his brief life he was diagnosed with glue ear. The third time he went – last Wednesday – he was supposed to have received and been to an appointment at the ENT department of Wellington Hospital, it turns out. Well, no appointment arrived in the months that we’d waited. Today, yet another followup appointment for late-March with the audiologist at the hospital arrived in the post… I’m thinking that maybe we should go privately, as we’re fed up with waiting. This is such a crucial age, and we’ve waited enough, it feels. I have a suspicion that Daniel may have glue ear, too – his speech and language is delayed, and sometimes it appears he doesn’t hear us when we talk to him. He also cannot say many sounds (‘p’, ‘b’, ‘w’… etc) clearly. Do I go to our GP yet again, and get them to refer us to a private clinic of some sort? Unfortunately we don’t have medial insurance – just our luck ; )

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