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Tips to prevent and reduce the impact of hearing loss

03. March 2018
On March 3, for World Hearing Day 2018, the World Health Organization (WHO) will draw attention towards the rise in the number of people with hearing loss across the world with the theme “Hear the future”. The WHO calls on everybody to take action to stem the increase of hearing loss through preventive efforts and to help ensure that people with hearing loss have access to rehabilitation and hearing solutions. We share tips for everybody to contribute.

The Hear the World Foundation – an initiative of Sonova, the leading provider of hearing solutions, has been supporting people in need with hearing loss all around the world for more than 10 years with activities for prevention and treatment of hearing loss. Since its establishment, the foundation has all in all supported more than 80 aid projects, enabling thousands of people in need to hear better.

Everybody can help making a difference for the future

Preventing hearing loss is possible - and necessary. No matter your role in society, you can contribute by raising awareness about hearing loss and how to prevent it. Here are tips for you to prevent hearing loss and to reduce its impact:

As an individual:

  • Do not insert any object into the ear
  • Use earplugs and earmuffs in noisy places
  • In case of any ear problems, consult a doctor immediately
  • Check if medicines you take can affect your hearing
  • Have your hearing tested regularly
  • If advised to do so, use a hearing device as indicated

As a child carer:

  • Do not insert anything into a child’s ear for any reason including to clean it
  • Teach children never to insert anything into their ears
  • Take your child to see a doctor in case the child complains of pain or blockage or has discharge coming from the ear
  • Do not allow children to swim in dirty water
  • Do not hit or slap a child
  • Protect children’s ears from loud sounds
  • Teach children to listen safely through personal audio devices

As a community worker:

  • Learn about hearing loss and share information on ear and hearing care
  • Know where ear care services are provided and guide people on how to access them
  • Refer to a doctor people reporting with ear pain or discharge
  • Learn about hearing devices and help people to use them properly
  • Encourage deaf people to use sign language and organize support groups

As a teacher:

  • If a child is inattentive in class, it could indicate hearing loss; consider suggesting a hearing test
  • Educate children on ear care and on the risks of inserting objects in the ear and of listening to loud sounds, including music
  • Respect children: hitting a child or slapping him might result in hearing loss
  • Refer the child to a doctor immediately in case of discharge or pain in the ear

As a health professional, you can:

  • Educate on the risks of hearing loss
  • Treat hearing loss as needed
  • Refer patients for a hearing test or other specialized treatment
  • Monitor hearing in patients treated with ototoxic medicines
  • Encourage people to use hearing devices and other aids as indicated
  • Support those in the community who use hearing devices, sign language or other communication services
  • Join outreach and screening programs

Further information:

  1. The World Health Organization's Website
  2. Facts and figures about the rise in the number of hearing loss (only in English)  Facts and figures hearing loss (887.9 KB)
  3. Support the Hear the World Foundation's campaign on Social Media: YoutubeFacebookInstagramTwitterLinkedin or by donating through www.hear-the-world.com
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