What are the chances of hearing loss?

There are some babies who do not pass the hearing screening test that have a higher risk for permanent hearing loss.

Here is a list of risk for hearing loss

Babies born:

  • in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU)
  • with other family members with hearing loss
  • with certain syndromes, such as Down Syndrome
  • with very low birth weight
  • prematurely (Less than 37 weeks)
  • with physical problems of the head, face, ears, or neck (cleft lip/palate, ear pits/tags, others)
  • with Hyperbilirubinemia
  • to a mother who had an infection during pregnancy or delivery (Toxoplasmosis, Syphilis, HIV, Hepatitis B, Rubella, CMV, Herpes simplex, and others)


Healthy babies that did not pass the hearing screening at birth have a 15% chance of having hearing loss.

Of 100 babies who did not pass the hearing screening… 15 out of 100 babies have hearing loss



Every baby in Ohio gets screened for hearing loss when they are born. Hearing loss is the most common condition present at birth. Hearing loss can happen even when no one else in the family has a hearing loss. Hearing loss impacts communication, speech, reading and behavior.