World Hearing Day: Global Ear and Hearing Care Awareness

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World Hearing Day: Promoting Ear and Hearing Care Across the Globe

Over 1.5 billion people around the world live with hearing loss. To promote awareness of this serious issue and help find solutions for those with the greatest need, the World Health Organization devised World Hearing Day. 

Taking place on March 3, this holiday encourages everyone to participate. You can take part by hosting events and spreading knowledge on the pervasiveness of hearing loss and what everyone can do about it. 

Understanding the Significance of World Hearing Day

About 80% of all hearing and ear needs around the world are unmet. There is a significant stigma associated with hearing problems, with many people believing it is only a condition that comes with aging. 

People often have difficulty accepting that they may have hearing loss, which results in them delaying treatment. Because a huge part of hearing loss prevention involves getting help as quickly as possible, conveying to people why hearing loss occurs and offering them information on the available treatments is essential. 

World Hearing Day also strives to address the impact that hearing loss has on individuals and entire communities. Being unable to hear well often makes communicating with others difficult, leading to isolation. It also impacts access to education. Crucially, there’s even a connection between hearing loss and cognitive decline in older adults. 

Promoting hearing awareness is beneficial not just for individuals but for entire communities as well. People who have hearing loss depend on community services just as much as those who don’t. This puts a strain on resources. People with hearing issues also have a harder time finding jobs and participating in society. 

The WHO estimates that untreated hearing loss costs the global economy $980 million per year as a result of loss of productivity, health sector costs, and more. This expense doesn’t include the cost of hearing devices. 

Raising Awareness and Promoting Ear Care

World Hearing Day allows individuals, non-government organizations, and governments to plan events that help promote hearing health and educate people on the impact of hearing loss. World Hearing Day’s events often include free hearing screenings and educational activities for people of all ages. 

Early detection of hearing loss is essential because, with the right assistance, it’s possible to slow the progression of the condition. Knowing you have hearing loss allows you to be proactive and turn to hearing aids, cochlear implants, and other technology that can improve your quality of life.

It’s imperative to promote the efficacy of regular hearing checks as well as the importance of getting treatment if you do have hearing loss. In doing so, World Hearing Day helps people overcome the hesitation of reaching out for help. 

Global Initiatives and Campaigns

To promote auditory well-being throughout the world, World Hearing Day hosts a number of events online. These include webinars, social media campaigns, and virtual events that anyone can join. View some of their advocacy materials below.

campaign material for world hearing day

One of the initiatives the WHO began is the global standard for safe listening in entertainment venues, which imposes maximum sound limits that can help prevent hearing loss. It also calls for noise protection, like earplugs, to be available to attendees, along with instructions on how to use them. 

Many countries turn to World Hearing Day to begin campaigns that address hearing health. In 2022, for example, Kenya launched an event focused on adolescents and healthcare workers that promoted safe listening standards and offered hearing testing. 

In recent years, the WHO has been encouraging governments to integrate primary ear and hearing care into training programs for primary healthcare providers. The collaboration between global agencies is visible in the World Heading Day small grants. These are available because of a collaboration between the WHO and the Coalition for Global Hearing Health. These grants are what make many March 3 events possible. 

How Individuals Can Participate

Anyone interested in promoting hearing awareness can participate in World Hearing Day. You can attend local events and workshops, where you’ll get to hear from guest speakers, scientists, and healthcare professionals. If you’re unable to attend in person, many virtual events are available.

Share information on social media. Common hashtags you can use are #WorldHearingDay and #hearingcare. Some people also choose to start their own campaigns. These can involve hosting an event, partnering with local organizations and businesses to promote the day, or creating educational materials. 

One excellent way to participate is by advocating for inclusive and accessible services in your community. These initiatives can involve advocating for assistive technology in schools and workplaces and pushing for the inclusion of sign language interpreters or captioning at functions. 

Tips for Keeping Your Ears Healthy

Keeping your ears healthy often comes down to not being exposed to loud sounds without protection. Although earplugs or other similar options may not fully prevent you from experiencing hearing loss, they can help. 

When using devices like a tablet, your phone, or even the television, keep the volume low. It’s also important to give your ears a break from loud noises, especially those that reach 85 decibels or higher. 

If avoiding loud noises is impossible, give yourself a recovery period. Try to spend time in a quiet room for at least a day. You also want to make sure to stay up-to-date on your vaccines. Some diseases, like measles, can negatively impact your hearing. 

And avoid putting anything in your ears, including cotton swabs. Cotton swabs can injure the eardrum or ear canal. If you have a buildup of wax, turn to a professional for help. Never try to remove significant wax on your own. 

Perhaps the most important thing you can do, however, is get regular hearing checks. This will allow your healthcare provider to spot the early signs of hearing loss and help stop it in its tracks. 

Turn to Expert Audiologists at Happy Ears

Most people assume that hearing loss is something that only happens to people who are getting older, but it can affect anyone. To help reduce the chances of worsening hearing loss or to find the best way to manage any loss you’ve already experienced, depending on audiologists like the team at Happy Ears is vital. 

Celebrate World Hearing Day correctly by scheduling a hearing test. Call us or book an appointment online at one of our 3 hearing centers – Peoria, Surprise, or Gilbert, AZ.