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MED-EL Offers Free Online Hearing Test for Children

by Alexandra Kilpatrick

MED-EL’s national Hearing to Excel campaign seeks to raise awareness around the growing health issue of hearing loss in Canada by encouraging students to test their hearing.

MED-EL, a pioneer in hearing loss solution and global provider of hearing implant systems, leads the Hearing to Excel campaign at the start of a new academic school year. The hearing implant provider has partnered with VOICE for Hearing Impaired Children, one of the largest parent support organizations for families of children with hearing loss.

MED-El's Free Online Test

MED-EL’s online hearing test will help parents identify potential hearing issues in their children. The test is free of charge at at this address.

Through the campaign, Canadian primary school students will receive the opportunity to assess their speech and hearing ability within minutes using MED-EL’s free, online, advanced, research-based hearing test. All participants will receive advice from leading Canadian audiologists on hearing protection.

“Hearing loss among young people in particular is a growing concern today and the dramatic proliferation of mobile and home audio technology and we are thrilled to be bringing hearing health to the forefront and empowering children to take a more active role that will enhance their development and learning,” VOICE executive director Lori Nikkel told Herald Online.

“Children with undiagnosed hearing loss face a tremendous risk in how well they reach their full potential academically, socially and emotionally. In many cases, children are misdiagnosed as having learning disabilities or behavioral problems, so hearing tests are a crucial step in identifying problems that can be missed.”

Hearing Loss: a very Real Risk for Children

Hearing loss can impair development and academic achievement, according to studies. Statistics Canada claims that about 13 percent of children, up to age 14, have some form of hearing disability that can hinder speech and language development and learning.

With noise induced hearing loss on the rise, studies show that damaging noise exposure is a major cause in children and teenagers. According to one Harvard Medical School survey, one in five teenagers have some degree of hearing loss, an increase of 30 percent compared to the early 1990s.

“Early testing and detection of hearing impairment is crucial to educational success and we are urging everyone to take part in the Hearing to Excel program,” Nikkel told Herald Online.

VOICE representatives and leading audiologists will visit primary schools in Toronto, Montreal and Surrey, British Columbia through September and October, which is Learning Disabilities Awareness month. They will share an interactive hearing experience with students to demonstrate the impact of hearing loss and importance of hearing health. Children will better understand how hearing works and how to protect their hearing.

“Hearing loss is tied to many communication and developmental issues that can affect learning,” MED-EL co-founder Dr. Ingeborg Hochmair told Herald Online. “By reaching students and providing them with the resources that they need to protect their health, we are arming our youth for a healthier and more successful future. Our partnership with VOICE provides an excellent opportunity to educate Canadians about the growing issue of hearing loss and how to protect our invaluable sense of hearing.”

Want to learn more about hearing loss and how to treat it? Schedule a consultation or contact one of our representatives today!

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