Believe it or not, it’s May. Yes, I know. But people tell me that the calendar doesn’t lie, so I’m going with it. May is good for a great many things, not the least among them the annual speech-language-hearing extravaganza known as Better Hearing and Speech Month (BHSM). This event is organized every year by our national organization, the American Speech-Language Hearing Association in an effort to “raise awareness about communication disorders and role of ASHA members in providing life-altering treatment.” At it’s core, BHSM is an opportunity for speech-language pathologists and audiologists to engage the public at large in a conversation about what we do and why we do it.
There are a great many things going on this month to work towards that effort. So many, in fact, that one can easily become overwhelmed by everything that’s out there. Below you’ll find a small smattering of links and other ways to find information about the causes, identification, prevention, and treatment of all manner of communication disorders.
- Twitter: this is a hotbed of BHSM activity. Search the hashtag #bhsm (or check out the feed) and you’ll be privvy to a wide range of facts and stories from around the country.
- Watch the archived video of the recent google hangout hosted by ASHA
- Identify the Signs: Visit this site to learn how to easily spot the early warning signs for communication disorders.
- Take this quiz from the National Institutes on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders if you have questions about your child’s hearing and/or communication development.
- Visit SuperDuper for (literally) 401 different parent-friendly handouts about speech and language development and disorders in both English and Spanish.
- Be inspired by folks living and thriving with communication disorders!
- Watch Katie Couric chat with a teenager who stutters
- Watch Ellen make big dreams come true for a little guy with apraxia
- Watch an augmentative communication user ask The Biebs to prom
- Take the National Hearing Test! A simple phone call can let the caller know whether they may have a hearing loss.
- Check out a neat infographic from the Better Hearing Institute that illustrates the connection between hearing loss and many other health issues.
- Childhood noise-induced hearing loss is on the rise. The Noisy Planet hearing protection program, also from the good folks at NIDCD, has loads of information about protecting your child’s hearing health.
If you come away from this with nothing else, please know that Communication Disorders are Treatable! Have questions? Reach out and connect with an SLP or Audiologist. Talk to someone in your local area, or you can always talk to us! Leave a comment below, join us on Twitter or Facebook, or email us privately at takemyhand(at)thehellofoundation.com
Happy BHSM to you all!
(This post was also published on our sister site, The Hello Foundation Schools Blog)