May Was Better Hearing & Speech Month

May is better hearing speech month How is it already June? With May gone in a flash, you may have missed Better Hearing & Speech Month. This month-long campaign is designed to raise awareness for hearing loss and speech problems. It was originally created in 1927 by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA). Then, in 1986 President Reagan designated May as the official month to heighten public awareness about hearing loss and speech disorders. The goal of Better Hearing & Speech Month is to encourage people to take action if they believe there might be a problem with their hearing or speech. While last month may be over, there is no time like the present to learn about hearing loss.

Is Hearing Loss Common?

One out of three adults 65 years and older experiences some degree of hearing loss. By the age of 75, that number jumps to one out of two. Older adults are not the only ones affected by hearing loss. Children and young adults are at risk for noise-induced hearing loss, especially with the increase of personal music devices and earbud-style headphones. Other factors that contribute to hearing loss include ear infections, impacted earwax and ototoxic medications.

Can You Prevent Hearing Loss?

Visiting your Portland audiologist for a hearing exam is a good start. The earlier hearing loss is discovered the more treatment options are available. Untreated hearing loss can lead to debilitating social and emotional issues including:
  • Depression
  • Isolation
  • Memory loss
  • Cognitive impairment
Children should also have hearing exams, as hearing is important to a child’s language and social skills development. Untreated hearing loss in children can lead to developmental delays. Early intervention is key, just like it is for adults. Heed the message of Better Hearing & Speech Month. If you or your child is showing signs of hearing loss, now is the time to act. Contact your Portland audiologist to schedule an appointment today.