You might be surprised to learn how common hearing disorders are. Hearing loss is the third-most common health problem in the U.S., but it’s not the only disorder. Hearing disorders can strike anyone. Almost every age group is affected.
With these facts in mind, it might be surprising there isn’t more awareness! In fact, it can be downright frustrating to deal with a hearing disorder because so many people are unaware of them, their prevalence, and how they affect the people living with them.
There’s something you can do, however. You can raise awareness about hearing disorders. Get started by trying out one of these six ideas.
1. Get into Classrooms
Hearing disorder awareness should start with the young, and one of the best things you can do is reach out to the school community. Health practitioners and teachers can team up to create awareness campaigns for students in different grades. Health practitioners can bring information into the school community. An event, such as a classroom visit, provides a great opportunity for discussion.
Teachers can also have students complete in-class activities, such as a novel study, with the intent of raising awareness about hearing disorders. Many school districts employ educational audiologists who can assist and serve as an excellent resource.
2. Raise Awareness in the Workplace
Whether you’re a health practitioner, an office manager, or a construction supervisor, you can raise awareness of hearing disorders around the workplace. Even if you’re not in a managerial position where you work, you can encourage your colleagues and managers to help raise awareness.
Since many occupations put people at risk for hearing loss in particular, raising awareness in the workplace is a great idea. Occupational health and safety posters, information leaflets, and even employer-organized hearing tests and consultations can help raise awareness.
3. Visit Community Spaces
Does your community have a youth center, community center or an assisted living facility for older adults? What about a library or another community gathering place like a church? All of these spaces are excellent places for raising awareness. A library could host events and promote books about hearing disorders. Other gathering places may be ideal for posters and information leaflets.
You can also team up with community partners—such as local businesses, healthcare practitioners, or government bodies—to organize events. A local chapter of Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA) is also a great resource for community awareness, advocacy and self-help in a supportive group setting.
4. Organize Events
Organizing events is perhaps the best way to raise awareness about almost anything. Charity rides or walks can bring the subject to the forefront of public consciousness in your community. Participants can fundraise or form teams, while local businesses can support the event by offering free items, supplying food and drink, and advertising the event.
The event itself also has visibility—a group of people running, walking, or riding their bikes through town will definitely attract attention!
5. Partner with Healthcare Practitioners
You might be able to team up with a local healthcare practitioner, such as an audiologist, hearing clinic, or even public health department to raise awareness. A hospital may also be interested, especially if they have a department or specialists dealing with hearing disorders.
If you’re a healthcare practitioner yourself, reach out to other practitioners in your community. Hearing can and should be protected at every stage of life, and part of raising awareness is getting information to those people who might not otherwise know about hearing health and disorders or ever visit your clinic.
6. Get Government Involved
Your city council or mayor might be interested in assisting with a campaign about hearing disorder awareness. Other branches of government may be interested too, particularly local and state structures involved in health. Even government bodies who deal with workplace regulation might be interested in assisting with an awareness campaign.
Once you’ve got the ball rolling, you’ll see how easy it is to make hearing health more visible in your community!
Education & Advocacy
Associated Audiologists, Inc. is a local and community-based company that takes special interest in awareness and advocacy of hearing loss and hearing disorders. Our involvement in the community gives us access to various local organizations, groups, and even medical specialists that can serve as a resource to our patients. We take pride in making sure our patients of all ages have information about the various community resources available to make sure they are fully educated and involved when it comes to hearing loss.
Call Associated Audiologists, Inc. today and schedule a hearing evaluation and consultation with one of our doctoral level audiologists and make sure you are doing all you can to successfully live with hearing loss.