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Managing conductive hearing loss with hearing aids

Hearing aids are an option to manage hearing loss for people who do not want to or cannot have surgery.

This resource contains information about hearing aids to help you in choosing the right management option for your child. You will need to talk about the options available to your child with your ear, nose and throat (ENT) doctor.

What do hearing aids look like?

There are different types of hearing aid available to children.

Most children have small hearing aids that sit behind the ear (BTE), and are connected to an ear mould that sits within the ear. These hearing aids are designed to fit to your child’s type of hearing loss. They can be used by children with most types of hearing loss.

A different choice is a bone conduction hearing aid. These hearing aids work by your child wearing a hearing aid on a headband. This transmits the sound directly to their hearing organ. This type of hearing aid goes past any blockage causing your child’s hearing loss. However, they can only be used if your child’s hearing organ is working well.

If you want your child to try hearing aids, the audiologist will talk about which hearing aid option would be best for your child.

What are the benefits of hearing aids?

Hearing aids offer a non-surgical way of managing your child’s hearing loss. These can be used while your child’s hearing is down, and for as long their hearing is down.

What are the limitations of wearing hearing aids?

Hearing aids cannot be used if your child’s hearing returns to normal.


Wearing hearing aids when there isn’t a hearing loss can damage hearing.

Sometimes children do not like the look of the hearing aids and do not want to wear them because of that.

For children with hearing aids, regular appointments are often required:

  • To make sure that your child’s hearing hasn’t changed, and that the hearing aid is set appropriately to your child’s hearing loss.
  • To make new ear moulds as your child grows.
  • To fix or replace the hearing aids if they are lost or broken.

I have discussed my child’s options with the ENT doctor and I want my child to try hearing aids, what will happen next?

You will be contacted by hearing services to arrange an appointment to start a hearing aid trial. The assessment is usually in 3 parts:

  • Initial appointment to talk about the choice of type of hearing aids with you and your child.
  • Assessment and fitting hearing aids if needed.
  • Review appointment to check how your child is getting on with the hearing aids.

It is important to remember that hearing aids can only be fitted when there is a hearing loss. If your child’s hearing improves, then hearing aids cannot be fitted and will be removed if already fitted.

My child has tried hearing aids but we would like to re-consider surgical management

If you would like to re-consider surgical management of your child’s hearing then this can be talked about with your child’s ENT doctor at their next ENT appointment.

If your child does not have an ENT appointment in the near future, you can talk about this with the audiologist who can ask ENT to see your child again.

Contact us

Hearing Services

Telephone: 0114 271 7450
Email: scn-tr.audiology@nhs.net

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Please note this is a generic information sheet relating to care at Sheffield Children’s. The details in this resource may not necessarily reflect treatment at other hospitals. This information is not intended as a substitute for professional medical care. Always follow your healthcare professionals’ instructions. If this resource relates to medicines, please read it alongside the medicine manufacturer’s patient information leaflet. If you have specific questions about how this resource relates to your child, please ask your doctor.

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