Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Make a Sound Investment with Cochlear

Hearing loss is considered to be the most prevalent congenital abnormality in newborns. 

360 million people worldwide have disabling hearing loss.


 1.1 billion people worldwide are at risk of hearing loss due to unsafe listening practices. 


50% of hearing loss is preventable.


The above statistics are provided by the World Health Organization. Check some more disturbing data as well.

Hearing Loss

    

Most of us are unaware of these facts. Like every mother, I go into panic mode when my child exhibits any sign of illness. 

We celebrate the milestones they achieve at every stage of their growth. The first smile, the first step, the first word… everything becomes moments to cherish.  

If they exhibit any delay in attaining these milestones, we approach the pediatricians with our never-ending questions. We become paranoid and start troubling our Gods with fervent prayers.

I do make sure that I take my kid for regular health checkups. Be it for eye tests or any other test prescribed by the pediatrician. 

But I had never taken him for a hearing test. I guess it is the same story for the majority of Indian mothers.

Hearing ability is the most neglected among all our senses. Hearing loss is mostly silent and gradual.

 According to doctors, early detection, reliable diagnosis, and timely intervention can help us protect this precious gift that we take for granted.

Causes of hearing Loss?
Image Source

The major causes are:

·         Ear infections
·         Birth defects
·         Aging process
·         Head or ear injuries
·         Ototoxic reactions to drugs
·         Exposure to excessive noise


According to statistics, five out of 1000 infants are born with or develop disabling hearing loss in early childhood. 

Nearly 1 out of 3 people over 65 years suffer hearing loss. Over 90% of deaf children are born to hearing parents.

The Impact of hearing Loss:

When you are deaf, it impacts your functional, social, emotional and economic abilities. You are suddenly unemployable.

 Hearing loss is also associated with depression and poor self-esteem.

 Your social and emotional interactions become affected. Infants who suffer hearing loss face difficulty in learning languages. 

How can someone speak a language when they haven’t ever heard it?


I was completely unaware of all this until I attended a meet by Cochlear India on 3rd March, World hearing day. 

Cochlear is celebrating 30 years of hearing revolution. 

We met Brett Lee, the global ambassador of the brand, who talked about the importance of timely detection of hearing loss and the happiest sounds we might lose if we don’t give attention. 

Through the #SoundsofCricket Campaign,  Brett Lee aims to spread awareness of how Cochlear implants can help individuals lead a normal life.

Brett Lee with Komal and her doctor

At the event, we interacted with nine-year-old Komal and her mother.

 Komal was born with a severe hearing disability and didn’t speak or make any sound other than a few syllables unlike other children of her age initially. 

She received the Cochlear implant at age two and then underwent speech therapy for a year. 

She is now a happy and normal child who enjoys regular school and other co-curricular activities like any other kid of her age. 

Her sound processor KansoTM was barely visible as the design camouflaged it efficiently.

 The surgeon who operated on her told us that the Cochlear implant surgery is a minor surgery done under general anesthesia.

 I also talked with her mother and congratulated her for taking such a smart decision for her child.

At the event, both of us (me and my son) underwent hearing screening. To my relief, we had normal hearing.

Hearing Test

(My son undergoing the TEOAE test)

I was tense when my son sat for the hearing test. He underwent two tests. 

Transient evoked Otoacoustic emission test (TEOAE) and Pure tone audiometry test (PTA). It hardly took two minutes to complete it and was completely painless.

 Otoacoustic emission test measures an acoustic response produced by the hair cells or cochlea, which in essence bounces back out of the ear in response to a sound stimulus.

 A small probe that contains a microphone and speaker was placed into his ear.

In the Pure tone audiometry or PTA, a machine called an audiometer was used to produce sounds at various volumes and frequencies (pitches). 

He had to listen to the sounds through headphones and respond when he heard them by raising his finger. It was easy and hassle free.

Can’t we dedicate a few minutes to ensure that our little ones lead better and efficient lives?

What can you do when hearing loss is detected?
Ear Anatomy 

The treatment differs according to the type of hearing impairment you have. 

For slight hearing loss, hearing aids are enough. 

Hearing aids capture sound, amplifies it, and send the sound down the ear canal, through the middle ear to the inner ear where the hearing nerves receive it and transfer it to the brain.

A cochlear implant is the easiest solution when there is severe damage in the inner ear or cochlea.

 A Cochlear implant is an electronic medical device that does the work of damaged parts of the inner ear (cochlea) to provide sound signals to the brain.  

Check this video which explains how it works.



A bone conduction implant which bypasses problems in the outer and middle ear by sending sound through bone directly to the inner ear would be the solution if you have defects in the outer and middle ear.

KansaTM:


The main reason why many dislike wearing hearing aids or sound processors is that the associated wires and devices are often a proclamation that they have a hearing disability. 

Children get bullied in school and adults attract sympathetic glances.

KansaTM the latest sound processor from Cochlear is tiny and discreet. 

It comes in various colors to match your hair color, is wireless and worn away from the ear, camouflaged under the hair.

Dear parents, let us take a vow that if a loved one is exhibiting any symptoms of hearing loss, we will not hesitate.

 Let us visit the nearest clinic and get a test done. May our loved ones hear now and always. 

If you wish to know more about Cochlear, visit them at,


Cochlear.com || Twitter Handle: @CochlearIndia || Facebook page 


6 comments:

  1. We were all not aware of all this before attending this event. Thanks to cochlear India for this initiative. Glad to spread awareness about it as moms. Good read Preethi.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. True, Deepa. Thanks to Cochlear for making us aware. I am spreading awareness among my relatives and friends as well.

      Delete
  2. Great awareness drive by brand .Thank you Preethi for sharing with ypur family friends and also on social media.
    #BB

    ReplyDelete
  3. Revolutionary initiative by brands, going to change many lives definitely. Thanks for sharing this with everyone and making them aware of the cochlear implant

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, revolutionary indeed.
      Thank you for reading :).

      Delete

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