JPMC symposium: ‘1.4m people have hearing problems’

Experts discuss noise pollution, cancer and depression.

Ppi March 29, 2011


More than 1.4 million people in the country have hearing problems due to a sharp increase in noise pollution and radiation that is emitted from mobile phones and computers, experts said at the 48th medical symposium at Jinnah hospital on Tuesday.

Constant honking in traffic jams and the extended use of cell phones is bad for your hearing, they said. Persistent pain in the ears and nasal congestion should not be taken lightly and people should seek medical attention immediately.

ENT chief Prof Tariq Rafi attributed the increasing number of patients with hearing problems to the escalation in noise pollution.

Every year, the number of patients goes up by around seven per cent.

Those who already have a hard time hearing need to be even more careful because they could be at risk of deafness. Sindh Medical College principal and ENT specialist Prof Umer Farooq added that even children are being affected now because of computer games that require using earphones for long periods of time.

Meanwhile, dental department in-charge Dr Abid Mehmood talked of mouth cancer, which is also being reported more and more. The causes are the same - smoking and chewing tobacco. He urged the authorities to ban smoking as they have banned using drugs.

Prof Iqbal Afridi of the psychiatry department said that one out of four individuals in the country complains of depression.

Published in The Express Tribune, March  30th, 2011.

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