Enjoying the birds that sing when you’re in the forest, immersing yourself in the music of your favorite artist at a concert, or simply everyday conversations. The similarities in these different situations, is that it all concerns the sound you hear. Hearing sounds is the most normal thing in the world for a lot of people. You hardly ever think about it, but your hearing is worth a lot. Could you imagine a life in which you could hear nothing, all of a sudden?
Unfortunately there are also a lot of people who hear hardly anything or even nothing, the deaf and the hearing impaired. Some people are born deaf, others suffer hearing loss as they get older due to various situations. The best known form of hearing loss is tinnitus, a condition in which you can suffer noise, beeping or ringing in your ears. Once you have suffered hearing loss and have become hearing impaired or even deaf, this may significantly affect your life.
By using the magic of the chicken, scientists are working on medicine that is supposed to be able to heal hearing loss. In addition, modern technology is so advanced that it is possible to allow the deaf or hearing impaired to hear again. In order to do that, an implant is placed in the cochlea of the ear, allowing sounds to be heard again. There are wonderful stories written in the media in which people or even babies hear for the very first time. Because it is quite a revelation of course, if you go from hearing nothing to hearing something. It often leads to emotional situations, such as in this wonderful example of Joanne Milne.
As has become evident, the developments are ever evolving and let’s hope that, in the near future, less and less people suffer from hearing loss. Until then, it is necessary to prevent hearing loss to a minimum. Use hearing protection allowing you to enjoy all sounds around you years to come.
By Lisette de Roode