Amanda Sahadi was lucky. Born profoundly deaf, the 14-month-old from Brooklyn, New York, can hear her big sister's voice and can say words such as "mama" and "more" -- a startling achievement for someone who couldn't even hear a door slam when she left the hospital nursery.
Amanda hears and speaks today thanks to a law requiring hearing screening for all newborns in her state. This early diagnosis helped Amanda's parents act quickly to get her help. She now wears a cochlear implant, a small electronic device that provides a sense of sound to people with severe to profound hearing loss.
Kids like Amanda are benefiting from early diagnosis, and it's not just hearing that's getting attention. Last year, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) issued an extensive policy statement on the correct way for doctors to screen newborns for cataracts, drooping eyelids, and other vision problems at each well-baby visit.
You should also keep an eye on your child's vision and hearing health. Learn how the two most important senses develop in your child's first year and what may indicate a problem.