The purpose of screening is to find a health problem early and treat it. Hearing screening is a test to tell if someone has hearing loss. It is given to all babies because hearing plays a role in development. There are no guidelines for screening adults for hearing loss.

All babies should be screened for hearing loss from birth to no later than age 1 month. Babies who do not pass the screening should have a full hearing test no later than age 3 months.

Children who are at risk for hearing loss should have at least 1 hearing tests by age 2 to 2 and a half years. Children who do not pass should have a full hearing test done right away.


Hearing loss. Healthy Children—American Academy of Pediatrics website. Available at: Updated August 1, 2009. Accessed October 29, 2019.

Hearing screening. American Speech-Language-Hearing Association website. Available at: Accessed October 29, 2019.

Screening and diagnosis of hearing loss. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. Available at: Updated March 21, 2019. Accessed October 29, 2019.

Stachler RJ, Chandrasekhar SS, et al; American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery Foundation (AAO-HNSF). Clinical practice guideline: sudden hearing loss. Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 2012 Mar;146(3 Suppl):S1-35.

Sudden sensorineural hearing loss. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: Updated November 26, 2018. Accessed October 25, 2019.

Last reviewed September 2019 by EBSCO Medical Review Board Daniel A. Ostrovsky, MD  Last Updated: 06/03/2020