Awareness of hearing loss is considered critical

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Deon Ceronio performs a hearing test on Elizabeth Maphungwane during a free community wellness day in Batho.Photo: Teboho Setena

The importance of improving hearing as a central aspect of physical wellbeing was highlighted at a free community wellness day for seniors.

Screenings were carried out to identify hearing loss at St. John’s Methodist Church in Batho, Bloemfontein on July 16.

The event was organized by Deon Ceronio, Audiologist, in partnership with Rexton Hearing Aids.

Ceronio said hearing difficulties can be treated with an effective approach and the use of a technological device.

A total of 52 people aged 60 and over were screened, and 20 were invited to take a diagnostic test.

Ceronio said the focus on hearing loss as part of wellness was driven by three issues: the difficulty people in government facilities have to access hearing aids, the lack of community awareness technological hearing aids available and the long wait time to seek help for hearing loss.

“Sometimes patients wait three years to get hearing aids from government departments. Delay in treating patients with hearing difficulties and not providing hearing aids results in hearing loss,” Ceronio said.

“We will serve those who need hearing aids and try to provide them with affordable aids.”

Screening for cholesterol, blood pressure and blood sugar was also done.

“This holistic approach aims to improve their lives.

“Hearing loss is common in the elderly, from the age of 60, and hearing loss increases with age.

“Many people are unaware of hearing difficulties and the fact that they can be improved with the use of a hearing aid. Many people live longer without amplification and wait much longer before doing something about it.

“Hearing loss issues are different from sight loss. Immediately with a loss of vision, people go to consultation.

People were also told about factors contributing to hearing loss. Loud noise is one of the most common causes.

Ceronio said that based on informed observations from the attendance of the elderly, there is a great need to have community wellness programs focusing on hearing loss in Mangaung in the future. .

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