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Why choose microsuction for wax removal?

Earwax is naturally produced by the ear to protect the skin of the ear canal and to trap dust and dirt that enters the ear. Normally earwax works its way towards the opening of the ear canal where it falls out or is washed away.

In some cases wax can build up in the ear canal, this is more likely in older people or hearing aid users. Signs that there may be a wax build up include muffled hearing, earache or tinnitus (ringing or buzzing noises in your ears). Remember, it is important not to try to remove earwax yourself as you may push the wax deeper into your ear or cause damage to your eardrum.

Traditional wax removal methods include syringing, whereby water is flushed into the ear under pressure to wash out ear wax. Ear syringing carries a risk of perforating the eardrum due to the force of the water pressing up against it, consequently many GP practices are reluctant to provide ear syringing services.

Microsuction involves using a microscope or magnifying glasses and a small suction tube to remove wax from the ear. Wax removal in this way does not place any pressure on the eardrum and therefore carries a much lower risk of causing any damage.

Wax removal via microsuction is available through CMD Hearing Care in Leeds and Teesside. Please contact us if you have any questions or would like to make a booking.

For more information on wax removal please see the NHS Website.

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Mild Hearing Loss in Children

Mild Hearing Loss is Very Common

Mild hearing loss is incredibly common in children. The majority of hearing loss is temporary and the result of fluid or congestion build up behind the eardrums, known as otitis media. Studies have reported that up to 95% of children will have had at least one episode of otitis media by the age of 6.

Mild Hearing Loss Affects Learning

Research has shown that the impact of mild hearing loss in children is often under estimated. Classrooms are noisy places, especially for younger children whose speech and language skills are still developing. Where a child has a mild hearing loss extra effort is needed to listen which has an impact on how well they can perform tasks they find difficult and learn.

Given the large number of children affected it is likely that a number of children in a class may have a mild hearing loss at any one time. This is especially true for younger children that are working hard on their speech, reading and writing. Research has shown that if a child has a mild hearing loss they are likely to have poorer academic achievement.

Classroom Soundfield Systems

In the UK very few classrooms are equipped with soundfield systems.

A modern soundfield system consists of a single speaker easily installed that works in a similar way to a sound bar that may be attached to a TV or surround sound system in your home. However instead of sending sound to different areas of the room it creates an even sound everywhere. The teacher wears a small microphone and their voice is transmitted to all parts of the room by the soundfield speaker. As a result wherever a child is in the classroom they can always hear their teacher easily.

A soundfield system also useful for the teacher, by reducing vocal effort and the risk of voice strain.

A soundfield system benefits all children in the class, not just those with hearing loss and is relatively inexpensive compared to other common classroom equipment such as interactive whiteboards. It is unfortunate that there has not been more attention given to the listening environment in classrooms. The National Deaf Children’s Society (NDCS) recently ran a campaign to draw attention to the issue of mild hearing loss and its impact on academic performance.

It would be great to see more soundfield systems in classrooms, if it is easier for a child to hear they will be able to put more effort into their work and learning.




References

Bess F. 1985 The Minimally Hearing Impaired Child. Ear and Hearing 6(1): 43-47

Lewis D. et al. 2015 Effect of Minimal/Mild Hearing Loss on Children’s Speech Understanding in a Simulated Classroom. Ear and Hearing 36(1): 136-144

McFadden B. et al. 2008 Effect of Minimal Hearing Loss on Children’s Ability to Multi Task in Quiet and Noise. Language Speech and Hearing Services in Schools 39(3): 342-351