A new study of almost 5,000 Dutch children found a link between poorer school performance and behavioral problems among students with hearing impairment, according to an article in Reuters Health. 

The study, published in JAMA Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery, focused on children born between 2002 and 2006 who had issues hearing tones below 25 dB; those with moderate or severe hearing loss were excluded, according to Reuters. 

The new study “highlights the fact that hearing loss, whether severe or slight, may affect behavior and school performance,” Dr David Chi, chief of the division of pediatric otolaryngology at UPMC Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh, was quoted in the article as saying.

Chi theorized that sounds from a noisy environment—including heating/cooling systems or loud classmates—may hinder a child’s ability to hear certain words, particularly if they have a hearing deficiency.

In an editorial that was jointly published in JAMA, Chi recommends that children with hearing loss be seated in the front of the class and that teachers with soft voices be equipped with microphones.

To read the article in its entirety, please click here.

Original Papers: Le Clercq CMP, Labuschagne LJE, Franken M-C JP, et al. Association of slight to mild hearing loss with behavioral problems and school performance in children. JAMA Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery. November 27,2019. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1001/jamaoto.2019.3585.

Jabbour N, Chi D. When slight degrees of hearing impairment in children may actually matter. JAMA Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery. November 27, 2019. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1001/jamaoto.2019.3613.

Researchers Find Possible Link Between Hearing Loss, Poorer School Performance, and Behavioral Problems

Source: Reuters, JAMA Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery