Since 1927, the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association has used May to promote the importance of hearing health, awareness of communication disorders and to encourage people to seek regular check-ups when it comes to their hearing health.
In 1986, Ronald Reagan issued an official proclamation naming May Better Hearing and Speech Month. A patient of hearing loss himself, his decision to start wearing a hearing aid in public made national headlines in 1983. The president helped break the stigma of hearing loss by embracing his own, which was caused by a pistol firing close-range during film production in his days as an actor.
“Sounds, whether we produce them or receive them, are an integral part of our lives,” Reagan said. “Sounds - both the ones we hear and the ones we make - help us to understand others and to be understood.”
At Healthy Hearing, we enjoy being your source for information on hearing loss, hearing aids, tinnitus, important news impacting the hearing loss community and helping you and your loved ones find the hearing health professionals needed to live happier, healthier lives.
This month we'll be focusing on helping individuals address their hearing loss. Early detection and action can be incredibly beneficial in when it comes to treatment and correction. Statistics show individuals wait, on average, 10 years or more before receiving the treatment they need for hearing loss - and that's usually a hearing aid.
When it comes to children, early detection is especially crucial since the language portion of the brain is still developing and learning to process words and sounds.
“In treatment, the sooner we can identify and address a child’s communication difficulties, the chance for better outcomes for the child and their family,” said ASHA president Elizabeth McCrea, “but it also addresses the issue of efficiency and economy. Less time may be spent in follow-up and certainly, ideally, less money spent in follow-up.”
Because we realize hearing loss can be a difficult topic to address with yourself or loved ones, we've got a few plans in May to make it easier for you to approach and if needed, seek treatment!
So what exactly do we have up our sleeve?
For starters, we're kicking off Better Hearing Month with the Healthy Hearing online hearing check. While online hearing checks shouldn't be used to replace getting a professional opinion, they can serve as a guiding tool. Hearing loss can be hard to detect, because often, the people around you notice it before you do. Or, perhaps you've got someone in your life you suspect might be suffering from hearing loss, but you're not sure how to bring the subject up without upsetting them. Our online hearing check can be the ice breaker needed to address a hearing loss suspicion. Not only does it give a personalized response based on your answers, we've put a different spin on this online hearing check that not only sets it apart from others, it makes it easier to discuss and approach.
And because we know hearing loss can sometimes cause feelings of embarassment and isolation, we're going to have four personal profiles on hearing loss during the month of May. We hope these stories not only inspire others to seek the treatment they need, but also help you realize you're not alone.
In addition to our online hearing check which will go live on May 5, we've also cooked up a tasty recipe to for hearing health! If you were a fan of our March recipe for optimal hearing health, make sure you tune in on May 20 for the delicious way we're celebrating Better Hearing Month. Hint: Chocolate and frosting may or may not be involved!
Whether you're looking for a fun way to approach hearing loss with a loved one, wanting to understand the personal side of hearing loss or just need a go-to recipe for a sweet treat (that can boost your hearing too), Healthy Hearing will have a little something for everyone while we celebrate Better Hearing Month!