'Raise awareness about hazards of noise pollution'

Kathmandu, March 3

To promote better hearing and ear care in Nepal, Bir Hospital organised a programme on the theme of 'Action for hearing loss: make a sound investment' on the occasion of World Hearing Day today.

"Though there is no data available on the hearing impaired in the country, over 20 per cent of the population is likely to go deaf because of the increasing noise pollution," says Dr Dhundi Raj Paudel, chief of ENT at Bir Hospital, adding that children, and patients of diabetes and blood pressure patients are the most vulnerable of the lot.

Sujata Khatri (22) from Gundu shares that she listens to music on her phone and that her earphones are always on. "When I take them off, a different kind of blank sound comes into my ear. My hearing has visibly gone down. Sometimes I ask the same questions more than once to ensure I heard it right," said Khatri.

A student of Ratna Rajya Campus, Salina Upreti, says she loves loud music. Unaware of the effect of various pitches, she used to listen to music playing loudly through her earphones.

"When the pitch of sound increases from 80 decibels, it badly affects the ear," said Dr Paudel. "It is very important to raise awareness about the effects of noise pollution. We must have national plans and policies and work towards reducing noise in our surroundings together," commented the doctor.