How do ear infections affect speech development?

I’ve heard that frequent ear infections or fluid in the ears can delay speech development. Is this true?

When a child has an ear infection this means there is fluid in the middle ear. That fluid is causing sounds to be muffled and not heard. Children learn language and correct speech sounds by listening to the people around them. If the speech and language their ears and brain hears is muffled this could lead to speech and language delays. So go get those ears checked! Thanks, Janice SLP

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So helpful, thank you!!!

@lilakole depending on how many ear infections or how frequently a child has had ear infections it can be a good idea to have your child’s hearing checked by an Audiologist. Especially if you have concerns about speech development, an Audiologist can rule out ongoing hearing impediment affecting speech development.

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