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May is Better Hearing and Speech Month

Did you know that May is Better Hearing and Speech Month?

Several years ago, I had an accident. It was a stupid accident, completely my fault involving a Q-tip. If you are easily grossed out, stop reading now.

About 11 years ago, I was getting ready for work and thinking about all I had to do that day.  I had just gotten out of the shower and was cleaning my ears with a Q-tip. And it was not the recommended way to clean your ears, let's just say.

I had a crazy, rambunctious kitten who loved to jump on the shower curtain rod and balance himself. That day he ran full force right into me and knocked that hand holding the Q-tip. The Q-tip jammed into my ear perforating my eardrum.

It was scary and painful. But the worst part was that I suffered from temporary hearing loss for several months while my eardrum healed. I went from hearing perfectly fine to hardly being able to hear from my left ear.

It affected a lot of things in my life. I had a job where I was on the phone for the majority of the day and now I could only use one ear. My driving was affected. My equilibrium was also off so we had to change our honeymoon destination and cancel our scuba diving plans.

After about three months my hearing returned to about 90% but it really took almost an entire year to get back to where it was before my accident.

Why am I telling you all of this? I think that before this point, I took the five senses for granted. I always assumed that I would be able to hear. Like being able to see. Taste. Smell.

Just having that temporary hearing loss changed the way I looked at the world. Communication skills were essential to my everyday life and when one of those skills was compromised, it really threw me off.

There are many things that we can do to maintain healthy hearing for the entire family.  First, learn how to use Q-tips properly. Really.

Next, get yourself screened regularly. Go to Costco (they do it for free). See your doctor or healthcare professional. Get your family screened as well. Hearing loss can sneak up on you over time.

Learn more about How We Hear.

For more information about Better Hearing and Speech Month and hearing loss go to http://www.asha.org

Facts About Hearing Loss

Hearing loss affects over 34 million Americans including 3 million children

1 in 6 Americans has a communication disability

Noise exposure has long been known to be a risk factor for hearing loss

More than 30 million Americans are exposed to hazardous sound levels on a regular basis

Who Will Be the 2011 Hearing Professional of the Year?

Rayovac is in search of the 2011 Hearing Professional of the Year.   The Hearing Professional of the Year nomination gives patients an opportunity to thank and reward their Hearing Professional by recognizing them for making a difference in their lives. The independent award program encourages patients with hearing difficulties to nominate their hearing care professional. Entries can be submitted now through September 30, 2011.

Voting details, award info and a Rayovac Hearing Aid coupon can be found under the “Hearing Aid Batteries” tab on the left sidebar of the Rayovac Facebook Page.

 

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10 Comments Leave a Comment »

  1. Wow, that is crazy regarding the Q-tip I often worry about that with me cleaning ears with kids running around. Didn’t realize it was better hearing and speech month!

  2. lace wigs

    Thanks for your information.

  3. Speech and hearing problems are very close to my heart because 3 of my children have had suffered from this. I was not aware that there was month dedicated to this, Thanks 🙂

  4. Donna B.

    I’m bad about the Q-Tip thing *hangs head in shame*

  5. Katharina

    Thank you for reminding me about how important these screenings are. Time passes so fast that it’s much too easy to let things like this slip. I’ll need to check into doing this right away and not procrastinate this time!

  6. BBU

    thedivinemissmommy.com is cool, bookmarked!

  7. That is an insane accident! Glad your hearing came back.

  8. WOW! I don’t think I’ll use Q-tips again. How scary!!!

    Our friend’s daughter had a drinking straw go through her mouth and into her ear. Thankfully she was fine.

    My step mom is deaf.

    Thanks for this great post and a reminder to take care of our health.

  9. This is a timely post. I’ve been having some problems with my ears lately (some hard crust in the openings of the ears that is actually painful if I touch it) and I really should have them checked.

  10. won

    If I could add one thing to your list….a unilateral hearing loss can be more detrimental to youngsters in their education that a bilateral loss can be. It is very important.

    I didn’t realize how much my late daughter relied on lip reading until I tested it by talking to her with my hand over my mouth. She really struggled then. Young people will often find other ways to compensate.

    For children, they can often choose their own designs and colors on their hearing aid(s). For my Olivia, it became a fashion statement 🙂

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