My name is Shevawn. I became interested in hearing conditions when my now 20-year-old twin sons were three years of age and were speaking their own cute language (while ignoring English) which resulted in difficulties with speech and learning.
I took them to a Speech & Language Pathologist who said it was common for twins, especially males, to create their own language and not to worry about it. As these difficulties continued, however, I took them for a paediatric hearing assessment. I was told they needed grommets but with no further information about what was happening, why it was happening, nor what long-term impacts could occur. This started me down the path of investigating hearing and hearing loss. I found out about the negative effects hearing conditions can have on neuroplasticity and the brain, especially on developing and deteriorating brains, along with the negative effects a disabling society can have on social engagement and quality of life. I grew a passion for this incredibly important and often under-looked topic and went back to university to undertake a Masters of Audiology.
I am thrilled to be transforming lives on a daily basis by providing amplification and rehabilitation services. I absolutely love seeing and hearing the difference hearing well makes to people’s lives. Hearing how once again people are engaging in life; hearing their children, grand-children, speaking over the phone with friends and loved ones, getting the tag-line of the joke, volunteering, joining social clubs, enrolling in education and so many other important life events. All the things that make life worth living!
Now, with the healthy hearing program and hearing screening at birth, certain aspects are becoming easier for hearing difficulties to be diagnosed. We still, however, have a long way to go with Medicare not funding hearing tests outside of the hospital environment and only those on a pension receiving assistance with hearing aids; which means that many hearing difficulties go undiagnosed with long-lasting detrimental impacts on quality of life, brain function and communication.
Hearing well at any age connects us to each other and allows us to continue to be actively involved in our world. I believe it’s time to get serious about hearing well!