Former president Ronald Reagan said it best: “Sounds, whether we produce them or receive them, are an integral part of our lives. “
Even though every May since 1927 has been designated as Better Hearing and Speech Month, President Reagan made a proclamation on May 21, 1986 officially declaring its yearly observance. Better Hearing and Speech Month aims to raise awareness about communicative disorders and the treatments that are available.
Heightening public awareness is imperative in the fight against speech and hearing disorders. According to the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders, 37.5 million Americans aged 18 and older experience some form of hearing trouble, 7.5 million Americans have some issue using their voices and between 6-8 million Americans have some form of language impairment.
Hearing loss can be caused by head trauma, loud noise, diseases and viruses, genetics, aging, malformations, tumors, infection and otosclerosis. Speech disorders—such as apraxia, dysarthria, stuttering and aphasia—can be caused by ALS, dementia, Huntington’s disease, some cancers, brain injury and stroke.
Better Hearing and Speech Month’s 2015 theme is “Early Intervention Counts,” focusing on the importance of getting screened and taking preventative measures for hearing loss and speech issues.
Bacharach Institute for Rehabilitation has hearing centers in both the Pomona and Somers Point campuses. With advanced technology, a caring and qualified staff of professionals and a full-spectrum of hearing services, Bacharach offers quality hearing care for those with a wide-range of auditory issues.
Both hearing centers see patients of all ages—from newborn to geriatric. The services include complete evaluation services, auditory brainstem-evoked response testing, otoacoustic emissions testing (OAE), custom hearing aids, state-of-the-art digital technology, assistive listening devices, central auditory processing evaluations, computerized balance testing and education and support groups.
For speech-language complications, Bacharach has a speech pathology center that has licensed speech pathologists that are specialty trained to improve speech function and communication skills in adults and children.
At the speech pathology center, services include improving speech and sound articulation; refining language skills; evaluating and treating cognitive impairments, voice disorders and chewing and swallowing problems; working with employers, schools and the hearing center; and training on Dynavox and PECS systems for electronic communication.
To receive more information on the speech pathology center, call 609-748-5360. To contact the hearing centers, call 609-748-5370 for Pomona and 609-652-2244 for Somers Point.
Pictured left to right: Janet Revelle, AuD, director of audiology; Lauren Reale, AuD; and Michele Bruno, AuD