The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that 486 million people—more than 6% of the global population—experience hearing loss. On March 3, the WHO will recognize World Hearing Day to bring this important issue into focus for both the general public and policymakers around the world.
This year’s World Hearing Day addresses the theme of “Hearing Care for ALL! Screen, Rehabilitate, Communicate.” The focus of this year’s campaign encourages taking preventative measures against and screening for hearing loss, addressing and treating existing hearing loss, and focusing on communication at all stages of life. Below, we’ll highlight some recent articles published in the ASHA Journals focusing on these topics.
Hearing Screening Failure Among Students With Reading Impairment: Rate and Relation to Specific Reading Deficits: In a sample of school-aged students, 54% of students who had been previously identified as having reading impairments failed a hearing screening, suggesting that the reading impairment may be related to poor hearing.
Sensitivity and Specificity of Pure-Tone and Subjective Hearing Screenings Using Spanish-Language Questions: In an article focusing on older adults who spoke Spanish, authors investigated what questions professional could use to better identify hearing impairment quickly.
Evidence-Based Practices and Outcomes for Children With Mild and Unilateral Hearing Loss: As many as 50% of school-aged children with hearing difficulties experience mild or unilateral hearing loss. The 10 articles in this forum focus on this often under-served and under-investigated cohort.
Evaluating the Accuracy of Step Tracking and Fall Detection in the Starkey Livio Artificial Intelligence Hearing Aids: A Pilot Study: As technology advances, hearing aids can be used address other health factors associated with aging, such as a sedentary lifestyle and fall risk. The findings in this article prove promising for future hearing aid developments.
Prevalence of Self-Reported Depression Symptoms and Perceived Anxiety Among Community-Dwelling U.S. Adults Reporting Tinnitus: Both veterans and non-veterans with tinnitus have a higher rate of depression and self-reported anxiety than do those without tinnitus. These findings could be helpful in developing interdisciplinary health care and community-based interventions.
When Hearing Does Not Mean Understanding: On the Neural Processing of Syntactically Complex Sentences by Listeners With Hearing Loss: In this article, researchers used neuroimaging to determine that listeners with hearing loss processed speech differently than did their peers with normal hearing and showed lower performance rates when decoding complex sentences.
Cross-Cultural Adaptation of Hearing Loss Self-Management Patient Education Materials: Development of the Caja de Instrumentos de Pérdida Auditiva: Self-management is an important aspect of hearing aid treatment. Here, authors described the process of building understandable, actionable, aesthetically pleasing, and culturally appropriate hearing loss self-management materials.
Learn More About World Hearing Day
This World Hearing Day, we hope that you’re able to take some time out to read, share information, and reflect on the effects of hearing loss—effects seen not just in the United States, but around the world. The WHO will also be releasing their World Report on Hearing on March 3.
You can read more information about World Hearing Day from the WHO, and be sure to check out our topics page for the latest on a wide range of articles relating to audiologic/aural rehabilitation; hearing aids, cochlear implants, and assistive technology; and hearing disorders. Finally, ASHA has put together a digital toolkit including a hearing loss checklist and information both for people experiencing hearing loss and their friends and family.