Common Questions Regarding
Tinnitus and Hyperacusis in Children
Children can be born with tinnitus and/or hyperacusis or develop
either of these conditions. Pediatric tinnitus is not
In the same
manner than adults do: these conditions can be related to
noise trauma, head injury, drug reaction, virus or allergic
reactions, auto-immune disorders, chronic ear infection, hearing
loss, disease processes, brain injury, drug exposure, etc.
born with or who develop tinnitus at a very young age may not be
aware that hearing a phantom auditory signal is unusual.
Often, children are unable to verbalize this sensation until
school age (5 or 6). Young children do not have the
vocabulary or expressive abilities to communicate their
cited in other studies have shown behavior problems with poor
attention and concentration, depression, insomnia, restlessness,
lack of focus, and chronic ear disorders (like constant ear
ears in general are much more sensitive to noise than adults due
to their much better hearing ability, and often, children will cry
or fuss upon exposure to loud noises. Parents need to be
alert to children who respond negatively to everyday sound levels
including clanking dishes, barking dogs, traffic noises, or common
sounds such as refrigerators running or air conditioner
humming. Children and infants with this condition may fall
down, cry, cover their ears, or scream loudly.
evaluation by a tinnitus and hyperacusis specialist is in order,
and most often you will need a referral from your pediatrician or
primary care physician. Depending on the age and abilities
of the child, different tests will be performed to judge the
degree and severity of the conditions. Several sessions may
be required to complete the tests. A thorough briefing by
the audiologist or specialist is in order to educate the parents
or care givers about these conditions and remedies.
clinic, we have evaluated children from ages 4 to 18 who have
tinnitus and/or hyperacusis. Several children are now in
treatment and progressing very well.
instances where this happens, but for the majority of individuals
who suffer from tinnitus, the condition will not disappear.
Therapies for these conditions focus on habituation, or
environmental remediation. Patients and their parents may
find significant relief by contacting and enrolling in a treatment
clinic where the specialist has received certification in Tinnitus
Retraining Therapy (TRT) as developed by Dr. Pawel Jastreboff in
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