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Toolbox for educators to increase the awareness of the hazards of noise and to prevent hearing loss with teenagers
  1. G Van Daele*
  1. Correspondence Provincial Institute for Safety, Province of Antwerp, Jezusstraat 28–30, 2000 Antwerp, Belgium


An estimated 800 million people worldwide have a kind of hearing loss.1 This number is expected to grow to 1.1 billion by 2015.2. In developed countries, people start to suffer from hearing loss at younger ages, primarily because of excessive exposure to noise from concerts, television, MP3 players etc.3 Hearing damage from prolonged noise is permanent and can be devastating, whereas it is the major avoidable cause of permanent hearing impairment worldwide.4 Teenagers form a particular vulnerable risk group. Teachers take in an important place considering education, but however, they turn out to be rather ignorant when it concerns this subject. Therefore a toolbox has been developed in order to use it in a teenager group. With this tool, the authors aim to increase the awareness of the hazards of noise, next to preventing hearing loss in a playful and empirical way. This workshop is designed for educators interested in using this didactic box about noise induced hearing loss prevention. Participants will explore and discuss the content of the educative material. The box contains nine different tools which can be adapted according to the level of the group. The box (19 pieces) has been and can still be lend (for free) by schools, youth work organisations in four provinces in Flanders. According to the user evaluations, the awareness has increased, the most vulnerable group is reached, and an education friendly tool is developed.

[1 3] Hear-it.

[2] MRC Institute of hearing research.

[4] WHO (1997).

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