An Auditory Brainstem Response (ABR) test is completed by an Audiologist and follows two failed newborn hearing screenings. The ABR is a two hour test and is comprised of three different tests. After the ABR you get to leave the appointment with answers (yay!); answers usually mean you know a little more about what your child can hear or not hear, next steps, and recommendations. An ABR is very important but it is also important to know how to plan and prepare for the test to avoid sedation; which is why I put together some tips to get ready.
Tips to get ready for your ABR:
- Sleepy Baby – You want to make sure baby is sleepy but awake when you arrive. It is really important baby sleeps for the whole test in order to get accurate results and avoid sedation.
- Swaddle – I strongly encourage you being your babies swaddle to the appointment. This will help baby to stay still and relaxed while doing the test
- Feed – Bring a bottle or bring what you need to breastfeed baby. The Audiologist should have a boppy if you need one. They will also have you in a quiet, semi dark room to feed and get baby ready
- Bring the car seat – This helps to have the baby sit somewhere they are familiar, it also helps them to sleep, and it helps the Audiologist have somewhere to attach the wires and testing equipment that way you don’t have to hold baby and be still the entire time
- Bring your support person – I know with COVID this might be challenging but ask the office if you can bring your support person. Often times at this appointment you might get difficult news and it’s helpful to have someone there for support, to take notes, and ask questions
Here is a link to a YouTube video that provides additional information on how to prepare for your upcoming ABR test: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3WWmUEZrhDg
I hope this information and tips are found helpful to anyone preparing for their babies ABR test! Good luck and you got this!