In the lead up to World Hearing Day on last week on March 3, a recent survey revealed Australians were putting their hearing health last, with only 1% of people prioritising their hearing above other areas of health, including physical (56%), mental (26%), dental (8%), gut (5%) and skin (3%). That did not please Brett Lee, Cochlear Ambassador and Aussie cricketing legend.
Unidentified hearing loss can impact a person’s quality of life, including their relationships, access to education, employment and communication.2 While the COVID-19 global pandemic has forced many Australians to delay important healthcare check-ups, only 4 in 10 Australians have had a hearing screening in the last three
years.1 With an estimated 1 in 4 people worldwide predicted to be living with some degree of hearing loss by 20503, World Hearing Day is the ideal time for people to book a hearing screening.
Brett Lee spoke exclusively to Bharat Times on his work both here and in India on improving hearing health of people.
In his typical, disarming and very friendly ‘thoda thoda’ (not so fluent) Hindi, he urged everyone give their hearing health the priority it deserves.
“One 30-minute hearing screening can establish a baseline for your hearing, so that you can identify any risk factors, address changes early, prevent further damage and seek hearing solutions – including cochlear implants when hearing aids are no longer enough”, said Brett Lee.
“1 in 6 Australians experience hearing loss. We need to remember that hearing loss can affect people of all ages and backgrounds. If you or someone you love struggle to hear on the phone, or in a noisy café or ask others to repeat themselves, then you should get your hearing tested,” adds Brett. “There is some good news however in that 77% of Australians know where to get their hearing tested.”
Brett Lee with Cochlear have been doing real hard work in India, to help improve hearing health of people. Brett and Cochlear have been working tireless to get the hearing health checks automatically done for all new born babies.
Prior to their efforts in many unfortunate case, baby’s hearing health would come to notice very late which significantly lowered the quality of life in their early years.
Brett and Cochlear are endeavouring to have a universal hearing health check put in place in India. They have been great success in Southern India with the rest of India making good progress.
“In Kerala it is almost 100 per cent”, a proud Brett Lee told Bharat Times who has had a very personal experience of hearing health accident.
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His young son after having a fall had a compressed nerve and lost his hearing in his right ear for some time.
Thankfully, his son’s hearing was fully restored with his nerve uncompressing but the experience left Brett Lee with a first-hand experience of what can go wrong. He urges people to give their hearing health its due importance. Because bad hearing is not visible, most people tend to ignore it in the initial stages which can make things worse for them in later years.
Our hearing tends to suffer a bit with age but says Brett, there is no reason to suffer and lead a poor quality life when you can get hearing aid or even an implant to fully restore your hearing health.
“Prioritising our hearing is so important – it’s the key to how we connect with others and continue to engage in all the activities we love doing like catching up with friends, playing sport and enjoying time with family”, Emma Ramsay, Director of Clinical Affairs, Cochlear ANZ says.
“No Australian would ever not get their eyes tested if they couldn’t see, and it’s just as important to prioritise your hearing health. I would suggest finding a reputable audiologist in your suburb, town or city and booking an appointment as soon as possible,” adds Emma.
With World Hearing Day only a week past, do not put your hearing health on the back burner. If you have noticed even the slightest symptoms, book a hearing test immediately and get your quality life back.
It’s time for Australians to take control of their hearing healthcare. To find a local clinic and book a hearing screening today, visit http://www.cochlear.com.
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