May is Better Hearing and Speech Month!

In Hearing Loss by Dr. Marcus Kolmetz

Dr. Marcus Kolmetz
Latest posts by Dr. Marcus Kolmetz (see all)

The American Speech-Language-Hearing Association designates May as Better Hearing and Speech Month, and this year’s theme is “Communication Across the Lifespan.” Of course, at Audiology Consultants, we’d like you support you with your hearing health all year long. This month, we place a special emphasis on how important it is to have your hearing tested and then follow through with the suggested care. You’ve only got one set of ears and making sure you keep all five senses as sharp as you are able ensures you are living life to the fullest. We’d love to see you this May. Come in for a hearing evaluation or, if you have hearing aids and you’ve had them for a while, maybe there’s some new technology that would make them even better!

Statistics to Think About

From newborns to seniors, hearing loss affects all individuals across all age groups. And, at all levels, early intervention and care doesn’t necessarily occur. Many people don’t realize that babies can be born with hearing loss. Out of every 1,000 births, two out of three babies have some detectable hearing loss in either one or both ears. Fifteen percent of children between age 6 and age 19 have hearing loss in one or both ears. About 37.5 million Americans, or about 15% of the population age 18 and older, have indicated they have difficulty hearing, according to government health surveys.

Newborns get routine hearing screenings, but many times even with documented hearing issues, there is not routine follow-up. Adults with hearing loss often ignore the issue or, as they say, just deal with it and don’t get proper care. Just one in seven adults, or about 14% of adults over 50 get and use hearing devices even though they have hearing loss and could benefit from amplification. Many feel it is just a natural part of aging. But if we correct deficiencies in our eyesight due to the natural progression of aging, why wouldn’t we correct our hearing issues?

Signs to Watch For

For children, corrected hearing is necessary for developing speech and communication skills. Starting life out with the burden of hearing loss means they are likely to face challenges in their personal and social lives as well as academically. As an adult, it means career limitations as well as quality of life and health issues and some studies have even shown a link to opioid abuse and uncorrected hearing issues in young adults.

In children, signs of hearing problems include: lack of attention to noise and problems concentrating, no response when you call them, difficulty following simple verbal instructions, speech and language development delays, pulling or scratching at their ears, academic issues especially in reading and math and problems making friends and socially interacting at school.
Hearing loss in adults is one of the most chronic health conditions. Numerous studies in the United States and Europe show untreated hearing loss has a significant detrimental impact on an adult’s life.

Signs of hearing loss in adults include ringing or buzzing in the ears, failure to be able to follow a conversation or making inappropriate responses, muffled hearing, difficulty comprehending speech when there is background noise, avoiding conversations, social isolation and depression.
Untreated hearing loss in adults can lead to dementia, hypertension, sleep issues, more falls and longer hospital stays, diabetes and, after age 70, a higher mortality rate.

Get That Hearing Test with Audiology Consultants

Audiology Consultants has been serving the Panama City area since 1994, and we’d love to discuss your specific hearing issues and needs. We are proud to provide customized service to each individual that walks through our doors.

We’ll discuss what you want from your hearing devices and suggest some models that would work for you. We stay on top of technological advancements and can help you understand what each model has to offer and if it has features that will fit your lifestyle and needs

We are here at Audiology Consultants to assist you. Celebrate Better Hearing and Speech Month this May by giving us a call and make your appointment!