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Can Hearing Loss be Transferred from Parents to Children?

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Hearing loss can have a genetic cause. In fact, experts agree that most hearing loss is caused by some form of genetic abnormality. On top of that, hearing loss is regarded as the most prevalent birth defect in the developed world.

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Can Hearing Loss be Transferred from Parents to Children?

  1. 1. Salem Audiology Clinic | (503) 877-1684 | http://salemaudiologyclinic.com Discover more great content here: https://twitter.com/SalemAudiology https://www.facebook.com/SalemAudiologyClinic http://www.youtube.com/user/SalemAudiologyClinic http://www.pinterest.com/salemaudiology Can Hearing Loss be Transferred from Parents to Children? Is there such a thing as genetic hearing loss? Yes. Hearing loss can have a genetic cause. In fact, experts agree that most hearing loss is caused by some form of genetic abnormality. On top of that, hearing loss is regarded as the most prevalent birth defect in the developed world. DNA, genes and inheritance. They way your body functions and looks is controlled by the genetic code of your DNA – your genes. Hearing is a complex body function which is known to involve at least 100 different genes. Hearing loss can result from any one of these genes being missing or altered. When a person having these abnormal gene sequences has a child, the abnormal gene or genes are often passed down to the child too. Genetic hearing loss categories. Hereditary hearing losses can originate from flaws in the outer ear, inner ear or both areas. Depending on the specific cause, the ensuing hearing loss is classified as conductive, senorineural or mixed (which is a mixture of the two). The hearing loss does not necessarily start at birth. It might have a later onset after the child has learned to speak (postlingual hearing loss). One of the most common disorders to affect hearing is Usher syndrome, a condition that is believed to affect over 50% of deaf-blind individuals as reported by the National Institutes of Health. Waardenburg syndrome is another common condition that affects hearing in the inner ear but also causes pale skin, a streak of white hair, and light or multi-colored eyes. The good news about hereditary hearing losses. While it’s true that parents with hearing loss genes may pass them on to their kids, it doesn’t necessarily imply that the children will have a hearing problem. The genes that cause hearing loss are usually recessive and therefore often don’t result in any outward symptoms because the child has received a normal copy from the other parent. It is not uncommon for the children of hearing impaired parents to have normal hearing. Since there are hundreds of genes associated with hearing, it is more likely than not that the parental hearing losses don’t share exactly the same cause. Families concerned with genetic hearing loss can see a specialist for genetic testing that can help identify potential risks.

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