A review of the challenges facing people with hearing loss during the COVID-19 outbreak: toward the understanding the helpful solutions
Background and Aim: COVID-19 is a pandemic infectious disease caused by a novel coronavirus has made dramatic changes in people's individual, family, and social lifestyle. Most countries have implemented some regulations including wearing face masks, face shields, and gloves and physical, and social distance in public places to reduce the spread of the virus. However, these global recommendations may be associated with significant social, communication, and behavioral challenges for hearing-impaired people. This review explains the problems that hearing-impaired people may experience in the COVID-19 outbreak and also some helpful solutions that can be implemented by audiologists, healthcare professionals, and other members of the society that somehow interact with these people in such conditions that communication barriers increase.
Recent Findings: Recent findings indicate that wearing face masks, physical, and social distancing, e-learning and virtual communications during COVID-19 pandemic have provided some problems for people with hearing loss. This can, in turn, have negative consequences including increased feelings of loneliness, isolation and also some limitations in access to educational materials and rehabilitation training of lockdowns of schools and rehabilitation centers or some challenges of online learning at home.
Conclusion: People with hearing loss may experience problems during COVID-19 pandemic. There are some strategies that can be implemented to partially solve some communicative and social problems in this group. The use of transparent face masks, compensatory strategies, as well as optimization of virtual, and telehealth, telerehabilitation and tele-education services can be helpful for hearing-impaired people during this pandemic era.
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