Publications by authors named "Juha Ranta"

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Studies on stigma regarding hearing impairment and hearing aid use among adults of working age: a scoping review.

Disabil Rehabil 2021 02 8;43(3):436-446. Epub 2019 Jun 8.

Faculty of Medicine, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland.

Purpose: Research on stigma has been criticized for centering on the perceptions of individuals and their effect on social interactions rather than studying stigma as a dynamic and relational phenomenon as originally defined by Goffman. This review investigates whether and how stigma has been evaluated as a social process in the context of hearing impairment and hearing aid use.

Materials And Methods: Systematic literature searches were conducted within four major databases for peer-reviewed journal articles on hearing impairment and hearing aid rehabilitation. In these, 18 studies with stigma, shame or mental wellbeing as the primary research interest were identified. The reports were examined for their methodology, focus and results.

Results: The reviewed studies used both quantitative and qualitative methodologies, questionnaires and interviews being the most common methods. All studies concentrated on the participants' experiences or views concerning stigma. Studies examining the social process of stigmatization were lacking. Most studies pointed out the negative effect of stigma on the use of hearing aids.

Conclusions: In order to understand the process of stigmatization, more studies using observational methods are needed. Moreover, additional research should also focus on how stigma as a social and relational phenomenon can be alleviated. IMPLICATIONS FOR REHABILITATION Low adherence in hearing aid use is connected to fear of stigma related to hearing impairment and hearing aids. Hearing health services should include counseling to deal with individual's experiences and fear of stigma. Stigmatization is a social process that concerns individuals with hearing impairment in contact with their social environment. Hearing health professionals should consider including close relatives and/or partners of hearing impaired individuals in discussions of starting hearing aid rehabilitation. In consulting patients with hearing impairment professionals should give advice about how to deal with questions of hearing aid, hearing impairment and fear of stigma at work.
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February 2021