Dansville, Hornell & Wellsville Hearing Centers

How are Birth Weight and Hearing Linked?

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How are Birth Weight and Hearing Linked?

When a child is born, there are many aspects that parents and doctors will take into consideration for the health of the child. Weight is one of the main factors that doctors see as an influence to a child’s health. A child weighing between 5.5 and 10 pounds is considered to be at a normal birth weight. If a child is born underweight or overweight it may spark some concern for both the parents and the doctors. Recent studies have shown a connection between abnormal birth weight and hearing impairments later in life.

There was a recent study done by researchers who teamed up with Manchester Biomedical Research Centre to analyze and study data from the UK Biobank study which collected data on over 400,000 adults in the UK.  The people being studied aged between 40-69 years old. The birth weight, if the person smoked, the economic upbringing, and any current health issues were all factors taken into consideration throughout the study. In the study, it was discovered that:

  1. Babies who are born underweight or overweight are more likely to experience hearing impairments, vision impairments, and a lack of cognitive skills as an adult.
  2. Poor nutrition in underweight babies may be connected to poor sensory system development.
  3. Growth hormone issues in overweight babies may be connected to poor sensory system development.

Although theses factors show a possible link to higher risk of hearing impairments, it does not necessarily mean that your child will suffer from these impairments. By paying close attention to your child, you can decrease the risk of him/her having any hearing impairments as a child or as an adult.

If you have any concerns about your child’s hearing, feel free to contact Krista Szalc Audiology, PLLC.