May was National Hearing Awareness Month, but hearing loss is not just a 30-days-in-May event. It’s a 24/7, 365-day issue 50 million people, including adults, seniors, children, teenagers and veterans have to deal with daily.
Hearing loss ranks third behind arthritis and heart disease and is the most common unaddressed health condition in the United States, and it is estimated to almost double by 2030. It bothered me in May that the only mention of hearing was in the increased hearing-aid ads. Hearing aids do not cure hearing loss. Hearing loss is not curable; it is treatable and can be preventable. And that is why there is the need to create awareness — to help society recognize that hearing loss is a major medical issue and to become educated on the signs and symptoms and about what can be done to protect their hearing before the damage is done. It is also important to know what can be done to help the person with hearing loss recognize that they have hearing loss, and to help those associated with them to understand the kinds of problems related to hearing loss and how to work through them.
There is so much information that the public is not aware of, and I was disheartened that the media has chosen to turn a deaf ear. Hearing loss is treatable, and there is no reason for anyone to miss all the important sounds of life. Life’s worth hearing.