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Do you hear what I hear?

September 22, 2012

With a new term of classes comes a whole new slate of topics to learn about. One of our courses this term is on Aural Rehabilitation. This class goes into greater depth about hearing loss and how to best work with this population of clients that we will inevitably see on our caseloads in the future. A component of our course involves some public outreach, as we each will have to travel to an elementary school in Edmonton to deliver a presentation called Sound Sense: Save your hearing for the music.

Bridges Psychological and Rehabilitation Support Services, an Edmonton company specializing in psychological and rehabilitation support for people who are hard of hearing, deaf or experiencing communication and language challenges, is responsible for the program. The Sound Sense program is aimed at grade 6 students to teach them about the importance of protecting their hearing so that they can enjoy good hearing abilities for as long as possible.  While I think I speak for a lot of the class when I say we are all pretty nervous about going out and teaching grade 6’ers, (I’m currently having visions of the kids throwing the earplugs I’ll bring for them at  me all at the same time…), it is a very important message to spread.

According to the Hearing Foundation of Canada, approximately 12.5% of American children and young adults in the U.S. are currently dealing with hearing loss caused by exposure to noise, and nearly 15% of school-aged children had hearing deficits at low and high frequencies. Imagine the difficulty a child would face, if trying to cope with a hearing loss was added to the many other demands of school!

Damaging your hearing isn’t even that difficult to do. A publication by The Canadian Hard of Hearing Association points out that you begin to damage your hearing just 1 minute after being exposed to sounds 110 dB and higher (which isn’t hard to reach at many concerts). The program teaches children to turn down the volume or, if that is not possible, to move away from the sound or wear hearing protection such as earplugs to protect the delicate inner hair cells of our hearing mechanism from being damaged. It’s an important message for everyone though, especially frequent concert goers and iPod users.

Protect your hearing – once the hair cells are damaged, they are damaged permanently, and science has not yet found a way to repair or regrow them. Save your hearing for the music!

One Comment leave one →
  1. Judy permalink
    September 22, 2012 5:53 pm

    Great post!

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