3rd Mar 2017 08:03:PM Editorials
Eastern Sentinel Arunachal News

Arunachal along with the world observed World Hearing Day today on March 3 which aims to raise awareness and promote ear and hearing care across the world. This year, World Hearing Day focuses on the economic impact of hearing loss with the theme: “Action for hearing loss: make a sound investment”. 

According to the World Health Organisation, even as incidence of hearing impairment among children is increasing at a fast pace, around 60% of it can be prevented by immunisation against various diseases, controlling noise pollution and regulating use of some medicines.

Around 6.3% of Indian population suffers from hearing and speech impairment and this includes close to 50 lakh children. And even among this 50 lakh, children living in rural areas of India more often suffer hearing loss than children living in urban areas. 

Unaddressed hearing loss poses a high cost for the economy globally. Cost-effective strategies to address hearing loss include prevention, primary health care interventions, early detection and intervention. Half of all hearing loss can be avoided through prevention. Primary health care interventions including immunizing children against childhood diseases such as measles, meningitis, rubella and mumps, and immunizing adolescent girls and women of reproductive age against rubella, will greatly reduce the risk of congenital hearing loss among babies. Identifying hearing loss early through screening of newborns, school children and adults above 50 years, and identifying and treating ear infections quickly are further low-cost actions.

Doctors suggest there are primarily two types of deafness - nerve deafness and conductive deafness. Nerve deafness is mainly caused due to sound pollution and problems during birth, whereas conductive deafness is often caused by socio-economic factors including poor hygiene, lack of treatment, leading to chronic infection and deafness.

Both sound pollution and chronic infection are preventable with good healthcare system and control over noise.

The number of paediatric patients as well as youngsters with impairment problems has increased substantially over the past years. Conducting hearing screening programmes for infants, and pre-school and school-based children, alongside hearing care training for health professionals are vital. Raising public awareness is another key strategy.

A child who struggles to hear may also struggle to learn to speak, underachieve at school and end up socially isolated. Therefore, ear health must not be treated casually and given focus vis-a-vis other health issues.


Kenter Joya Riba

(Managing Editor)
      She is a graduate in Science with post graduation in Sociology from University of Pune. She has been in the media industry for nearly a decade. Before turning to print business, she has been associated with radio and television.
Email: kenterjoyaz@easternsentinel.in / editoreasternsentinel@gmail.com
Phone: 0360-2212313

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