Risk Factors Associated With Early Childhood Hearing Loss

In this study, we examined the association between risk factors for hearing loss and early childhood hearing status (normal hearing, congenital hearing loss, or delayed-onset hearing loss) | American Journal of Audiology

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Method: A retrospective data review was completed on 115,039 children born from 2010 to 2012. Data analyses included prevalence rates, odds ratios, and Fisher exact tests of statistical significance.

Results: Ninety percent of children were born with no risk factors for hearing loss; of those, 99.9% demonstrated normal hearing by 3 years of age. Of the 10% of children born with risk factors, 96.3% demonstrated normal hearing by age 3, 1.4% presented with congenital hearing loss, and 2.3% demonstrated permanent hearing loss by age 3. Factors that placed children at the highest risk of congenital hearing impairment were neurodegenerative disorders, syndromes, and congenital infections. Factors that placed children at the highest risk of developing permanent postnatal hearing loss were congenital cytomegalovirus, syndromes, and craniofacial anomalies.

Conclusions: Certain risk factors place a child at significantly greater risk of congenital hearing impairment or developing permanent hearing loss by age 3. Follow-up diagnostic testing should remain a priority for children with certain risk factors for hearing loss.

Full reference: Dumanch, K.A. et al. (2017) High Risk Factors Associated With Early Childhood Hearing Loss: A 3-Year Review. American Journal of Audiology, June 2017, Vol. 26, 129-142

Social Support and Coping on Quality of Life Among Elderly With Age-Related Hearing Loss

The consequences of hearing loss hinder the everyday life of older adults and are associated with reduced well-being | American Journal of Audiology

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Image source: Andrea Squatrito – Flickr // CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Aim: The research aim was to explore the influence of hearing problems, various coping strategies, and perceived social support on quality of life.

Results: Quality of life was predicted by perceived social support and the number of comorbid diseases (i.e., the physical, psychological, environmental, and social quality of life was better the greater the extent of perceived social support and poorer the more diseases from which the participants suffered).

Conclusions: Perceived social support may be a relevant factor to focus on in auditory rehabilitation programs, in particular, for participants who communicate little support in hearing-related situations and are, hence, at a relative disadvantage. The involvement of significant others in counseling could facilitate the everyday life for older adults with age-related hearing loss and their significant others

Full reference: Moser, S. et al. (2017) The Influence of Social Support and Coping on Quality of Life Among Elderly With Age-Related Hearing Loss. American Journal of Audiology. Vol. 26(6) pp. 170-179. 

The Action Plan for Hearing Loss in Wales

This framework sets out what NHS Wales wants to achieve in an integrated health and social care system for D/deaf/people living with hearing loss.

The Framework is in three parts:

  • Part 1 introduces the overarching vision and the outcomes the authors want to achieve for people who are D/deaf or living with hearing loss.
  • Part 2 sets out specific actions that will help to improve and deliver sustainable and equitable integrated health and social care services nationally.
  • Part 3 specifies the leadership and monitoring arrangements.

Full document: Integrated Framework of Care and support for people who are D/deaf or living with hearing loss

Improving Deaf people’s access to mental health services

As many as two in three Deaf people in the UK struggle with mental health problems, but most find it too difficult to access psychological therapy.

Guidance for commissioners of primary care mental health services for deaf people from the Joint Commissioning Panel for Mental Health (JCPMH) and Deaf health charity SignHealth, calls for improvement to deaf people’s access to mental health services.

Despite having poorer mental health than the rest of the population, the 60,000 people across the UK who use sign language as their main language often come up against barriers when seeking mental health services.

The guide’s recommendations for commissioners of primary mental health services could make a dramatic change to the mental health of many Deaf people.

Paediatric hearing loss

Nieto, H. et al. (2017) BMJ. 356:j803

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What you need to know:

  • Take paediatric hearing loss seriously, especially if neonatal screening has been missed

  • Conductive hearing loss is most commonly caused by glue ear, usually a transient disease

  • All children who have had bacterial meningitis should have a follow-up hearing test

Paediatric hearing loss is a common problem; diagnosis and appropriate intervention are central to the child’s development. It is estimated that one in five children of around 2 years will have been affected by glue ear and eight in 10 will have been affected once or more by the age of 10.

Read the full ’10-Minute Consultation’ article here

Paediatric hearing loss

Nieto, H. et al. (2017) BMJ. 356:j803

child-1439032_960_720

What you need to know:

  • Take paediatric hearing loss seriously, especially if neonatal screening has been missed

  • Conductive hearing loss is most commonly caused by glue ear, usually a transient disease

  • All children who have had bacterial meningitis should have a follow-up hearing test

Paediatric hearing loss is a common problem; diagnosis and appropriate intervention are central to the child’s development. It is estimated that one in five children of around 2 years will have been affected by glue ear and eight in 10 will have been affected once or more by the age of 10.

Read the full ’10-Minute Consultation’ article here

Why is Hearing Loss a Public Health Concern?

Tremblay, K. L. (2017) Hearing Journal. 70(4) pp. 14,16

‘Answer: Because hearing loss is highly prevalent, with numerous associated health risks that burden affected individuals, their family, and their community.’

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When hearing loss is viewed from a public health perspective, the mission expands to include improving health and quality of life, not only through prevention and treatment of hearing loss but also through the promotion of healthy behaviors. An essential component of public health is the “collective action for sustained population-wide health improvement” (Lancet. 2004;363[9426]:2084 http://bit.ly/2lALIIj; Bull World Health Organ. 2014;92[5]:367 http://bit.ly/2lAFqIq). As such, there are many ongoing initiatives aimed at making hearing health care more accessible and affordable within and outside of the medical model (Ear Hear. 2016;37[4]:376 http://bit.ly/2lAL6SW; Ear Hear. 2010;31[1]:2 http://bit.ly/2lAIMew).

Read the full article here