Each year we learn more about the staggering statistics around hearing loss and how its effect on nearly 37.5 million Americans. That’s why in 2008, the American Academy of Audiology declared October National Audiology Awareness Month and National Protect Your Hearing Month.
Hearing loss is the third most common health condition faced by older adults; however, only 20% of those actually seek treatment. 7-10 years is the average time a person with hearing loss waits to seek treatment. Hearing can not only worsen but they can contribute to a variety of health issues, safety concerns, and psychological problems.
As hearing loss has become an increasing health concern, it’s important we understand the positive effects of proper education early prevention and motivate treatment.
So, what can you do on a local level to boost national awareness? Here are some ways you can provide the necessary information to your patients:
- Organize a free hearing screening and distribute hearing loss information, as well as business information so they can follow-up post-exam.
- Add consumer-friendly fact sheets to your waiting room or at the front desk of your clinic. Download these customizable fact sheets to help continue the conversation with patients about all types of hearing loss.
- Hold an open house at your practice. This provides a great opportunity for your team to get to know your community and share with the available services.
- Use resources like Noisy Planet targeted to parents and kids (ages 8-12) with messages about the causes and prevention of noise-induced hearing loss, and download newsletters, puzzles, and tests for kids.
October is a great month for a hearing check or to encourage a loved one to do so. What are some ways that you and your practice are acknowledging National Audiology Awareness Month? Comment below and let us know!