How Loud Is It?

How Loud Is It?

How Loud Is It?

When Breaking Out the Power Tools, Protect Your Ears

Since childhood, you’ve probably heard the warnings about loud noises and hearing loss. Maybe you’ve even experienced the sensation of ear pain, ringing in the ears, a headache, or a moment of hearing difficulty after the piercing bang of a firecracker, a blast from an MP3 player on high volume, or an ice-crushing blender whirring at the fastest speed.

But how loud is too loud? As power tools get pulled out of storage for spring projects, let’s take a look at the level of noise they generate and what you can do. After all, hearing is one of the most important senses. Understanding the dangers of excess noise exposure — and how you can protect your ears — can go a long way toward preserving your hearing.


What’s the Problem?

It’s rather fascinating that sound can affect your health, but it’s also a fact. Your ears and brain work together to perceive and process sound. The cochlea, an organ within the inner ear, contains tiny hair cells that detect sound and send signals to the brain through the auditory nerve. Excess noise can damage the hair cells, leading to temporary or even permanent hearing loss.

Hearing loss not only might impact communication but can also:

  • Lead to withdrawal from social situations
  • Play a role in increased risk of balance issues and falls
  • Go hand in hand with dementia and other cognitive problems
  • Appear alongside tinnitus (ringing or buzzing in the ears or head)


When Is It Too Loud?

As a measure of loudness, decibels play a critical role. Your own perception also matters, but sometimes unsafe volumes aren’t perceived to be as loud as they truly are. If you already have hearing loss, the sounds may not seem as loud but can still do damage. Generally, sounds that are 85 decibels or higher can be especially harmful. The louder the sound and the longer it lasts, the more dangerous it can be for your ears.

Consider these decibel estimates for some common power tools as well as other familiar sounds:

  • Whisper — 30 decibels
  • Typical conversations — 65 to 80 decibels
  • Lawnmowers — 80 to 100 decibels
  • Gas leaf blower — over 100 decibels
  • Sports games — 94 to 110 decibels
  • Hand drill — 98 decibels
  • Personal listening devices at highest volumes — 105 to 110 decibels
  • Chain saw — 110 decibels
  • Jet at takeoff — 140 decibels
  • Fireworks — 140 to 160 decibels


What Can You Do?

Power tools can be hard on the ears, making it all the more important to take control of your listening environment. Where to start? Look for equipment that’s rated for being quieter while still ticking all the performance boxes. With no power parts, reel mowers can do the job with a lot less noise, but electric, battery-operated, and even some quieter gas mowers might fit the bill, too.

Lowering the “volume” on your equipment can make a difference as well. You won’t find a volume knob, but a reduced speed setting — when appropriate for the job — might bring the noise level down. In addition, the user manual may provide options on limiting noise. And remember to take periodic breaks from using the equipment altogether, giving your ears a breather.

Steering clear of excess noise isn’t always possible, but hearing protection has your back. Earmolds with a variety of filter systems that help keep louder sounds at a safer, more reasonable level can help you tackle spring projects with confidence. The best part? They can be customized to the contours of your ear for an effective, snug, and comfortable fit.


Measuring Noise: Easy App

Did you know? The free NIOSH Sound Level Meter app, compatible with iOS-based mobile devices, can measure the sound level in your environment — at home, work, or play.

Using your phone or tablet’s built-in microphone, the easy-to-use app offers an instant decibel rating. It doesn’t replace professional instruments or expert opinion, but it can help approximate noise.

Check it out!

Count on us to help you seize the season. Have questions about noise-induced hearing loss or options for hearing protection? Reach out to our knowledgeable team today!

How Long Do Hearing Aids Last?

How Long Do Hearing Aids Last?

How Long Do Hearing Aids Last?

The Answer Hinges on a Few Variables

A: It depends! Cleaning or replacing parts like tubes and filters keeps your technology in good shape for several years. Same for coming to see us for regular clean and checks.

But that’s not the whole story. Your hearing aids do a lot for you — you might be surprised just how much. And each task needs to meet your unique listening lifestyle.


Directional Microphones

These help you focus on sounds in front of you, so you more easily understand speech in background noise. For example, this feature keeps you focused on Aunt Gretchen’s voice amid the other conversations at the family dinner table.


Noise Reduction

This technology analyzes the sound input and decreases unwanted noise. For example, if you work at a farmer’s market, this feature dampens environmental noises so you can maintain awareness of customers seeking your attention. Some models even have a specialized wind-reduction feature for those who love the outdoors.


Feedback Management

When the microphone and amplifier in your hearing aid are too close, it can result in feedback. Yes, just like the feedback at a rock concert — but right in your ear canal. This feature combats that feedback, so even if it does happen, it’s canceled out before you hear it.


Artificial Intelligence

Many hearing aids can learn your preferences and adjust automatically based on environmental cues. For example, your hearing aid learns about the voices you speak with most often. When you encounter those people, the hearing aid recognizes their voices and adjusts settings accordingly to prioritize them.


Bluetooth Compatibility

Today’s hearing aids can connect wirelessly to your smartphone or any other devices that use Bluetooth. For example, you can listen to the TV at your preferred volume (streamed directly to your hearing aids) while everyone else in the room listens to the TV at a different volume.


Do They Meet Your Needs?

Manufacturers constantly innovate to make these features even better. And they’re always inventing new features to meet demand. A better question would be, “How long will my hearing aids meet my needs?”

It’s a lot like how you might approach your car. If your second child is about to arrive, you probably need to swap your perfectly good sedan for a minivan.

Similarly, with hearing aids, if your quiet office job now requires you to walk the shop floor twice a day, you’ll need better noise reduction. And odds are, if your hearing aids are four years old, the models available right now have far better noise reduction.

That’s why I say, “It depends.” Well-maintained devices last a long time — but as your needs change, the technology you need might change, too.

Has it been a while since your last clean and check? Call now to get one on the books so we can ensure you’re hearing your best!

Celebrating Black History Month: 10 Notables With Hearing Loss

Celebrating Black History Month: 10 Notables With Hearing Loss

Time to Get Inspired

With more than 1.5 billion people touched by hearing loss – including some 3.6 million in Canada
alone – many icons in pop culture, politics, academics, and beyond have experienced this issue in their own lives. For Black History Month, we’re showcasing 10 inspiring people with hearing loss.


1. Nakia Smith

Every culture has language, and Canadian TikTok influencer Nakia Smith is helping ensure Black American Sign Language (BASL) is acknowledged and amplified. Developed during segregation when Black students were barred from attending the first U.S. school for deaf people, BASL is an expressive source of community and connection that Smith is working to share with more people in the world.


2. Whoopi Goldberg

Oscar-winning actress, comedian, activist, producer, writer, and “The View” moderator, Goldberg cites longtime exposure to loud music as the reason for her hearing loss, according to published reports. The Sister Act and Ghost star, who has collaborated with the Starkey Hearing Foundation, wears hearing aids and has advised others to take care of their hearing health.


3. Tamika Catchings

The four-time Olympic gold medalist and retired WNBA great of Indiana Fever fame was born with a hearing loss, using the experience to help fuel her drive to win. “In the classroom, kids could make fun of me for being different,” wrote Catchings in a
2011 ESPN profile. “On the soccer field (my first sport) and eventually the basketball court, they couldn’t. I outworked them, plain and simple.”


4. Andrew Foster

Being the first African American to hold a Bachelor of Arts degree from Gallaudet University, the renowned school for deaf and hard-of-hearing students, was one of many pioneering moments for Foster, who then earned two master’s degrees at other institutions and eventually launched more than 30 schools for the deaf in over a dozen African nations.


5. Halle Berry

An alleged domestic violence incident led to Berry’s hearing loss, but the Oscar-winning actress, activist, beauty brand partner, and X-Men megastar didn’t let that setback torpedo her goals. Berry, also a producer, has around 60 movie and television acting roles under her belt and debuted as a director in 2021 with the film Bruised.



This Emmy- and Grammy-winning recording artist, who is also a tech visionary, producer, DJ, designer, and education philanthropist, is best known for his Black Eyed Peas hits. Many people may not know that the global entertainer experiences tinnitus, which he has described as a constant ringing in his ears.


7. Jenelle Rouse

A Canadian educator, applied linguistics researcher, consultant, and professional dancer, Dr. Jenelle Rouse brings a firsthand experience with deafness to her work. The sought-after speaker not only advocates for greater empowerment among deaf citizens but is also leading a team investigating the lack of documented information about the lives of Black Deaf Canadians.


8. Claudia Gordon

After losing her hearing at age 8 and migrating to the United States from Jamaica with her mother at age 11, Gordon defied the naysayers to not only reportedly become the first Black and deaf female attorney in the U.S. but also to help enforce the rights of those with disabilities, as she worked as a lawyer in the executive branch under former President Barack Obama.


9. Connie Briscoe

A New York Times bestselling author, Briscoe, who has a cochlear implant, was born with a hearing loss, but she never let it slow her down. The Money Can’t Buy Love and Big Girls Don’t Cry writer has sold more than 600,000 hardcover and paperback copies of her first novel, Sisters and Lovers, per an onlinebio, and credits tackling hearing loss with helping her grow “stronger, more resilient and more determined to reach [her] goals.”


10. Tank

Grammy- and Soul Train Music-nominated R&B singer Tank, known for his solo work and acclaim in former supergroup TGT, announced in 2021 that he had hearing loss. The songwriter and producer with several acting credits under his name didn’t let that stop him. He crafted the 17-trackR&B Money, released in August 2022. Though Tank says it’s his final album as acting roles become more of a focus, don’t count this American Music Award nominee out.

Don’t let hearing loss get in the way of reaching your dreams – not even a little bit! Be a hero to the people who count on you by keeping your hearing in top shape. Contact us to schedule a hearing exam or a clean and check of your hearing aids today.



  • American Sign Language (ASL), widely used in Canada, is among the federally recognized primary languages in the country, along with Quebec Sign Language and Indigenous sign languages.
  • Though not federally recognized, Black American Sign Language – an ASL relative – is also used, and some citizens would like to see it further researched as well as officially acknowledged.
  • Advocates, such as Black Deaf Canada, are emerging to help foster community and close the representation
    gap experienced by Black, deaf citizens when it comes to accessibility.
National Heart Month: Are Your Ears & Cardio Health Connected?

National Heart Month: Are Your Ears & Cardio Health Connected?

National Heart Month: Are Your Ears & Cardio Health Connected?

Take a Closer Look With These 5 Facts

What do hearing and your heart have in common? They both help you experience the world in your own unique way. And with National Heart Month celebrated in February, it’s a great time to talk about the importance of taking care of cardiovascular and ear health. They’re even more connected than you might think!

Check out these five facts:


1. Global Issue

Like hearing loss, which affects more than 1.5 billion children and adults, per the World Health Organization, cardiovascular disease — including heart disease and stroke — is a global challenge affecting people of all walks of life. It’s the No. 1 killer worldwide, with nearly 18 million deaths annually, according to public-health estimates.


2. Higher Risk

A study reviewing national health surveys found that the majority of older adult respondents who had heart failure were also experiencing hearing loss, per a Harvard news report on the investigation. A separate study discovered that a history of heart attack could mean at least a two-fold chance of hearing loss for women.


3. Increased Mortality

Hearing loss alone is linked to a respective 13% and 28% increase in the odds of all-cause and cardiovascular mortality. When hearing loss is paired with vision loss, the increase jumps to 40% and 80%, respectively. The reasons aren’t fully known, but ties between hearing loss and other conditions that contribute to physical frailty — cognitive decline, for example — are suspected factors.


4. Mitigating Factor

Both hypertension — a major contributor to development of heart disease — and hearing loss may play a significant role in curbing dementia globally. The UK-based Lancet Commission identified hypertension and hearing loss among 12 potentially modifiable risk factors that, when addressed, could prevent or delay 40% of dementia cases worldwide.


5. Blood Flow

Exactly how heart issues and hearing loss are connected isn’t yet conclusive in all cases. Cardiovascular disease, however, can cause decreased hearing sensitivity by actually restricting blood flow to the structures of the inner ear. These structures require blood flow for nourishment.

As you can see, taking care of both your heart and your hearing supports overall health in more ways than one. Some risk factors such as age and family history can’t be helped, but healthy choices such as avoiding tobacco, choosing a nutritious diet, taking up physical activities, and scheduling regular health checkups can make a difference in helping prevent either condition.

If you have or suspect heart-health issues, see your cardiologist and make sure professional hearing help is also part of your wellness plan. Our knowledgeable team can evaluate any hearing problems and provide solutions that help keep you healthy and connected to what you love. Contact us today!

The 4 Different Types of Tinnitus

The 4 Different Types of Tinnitus

The 4 Different Types of Tinnitus

Tinnitus: Common, Constant, Treatable, and Manageable

Do you hear a phantom ringing, whooshing, or buzzing noise – but no one else hears it? You’re not alone. It’s a common condition known as tinnitus.

For some people, tinnitus is a simple fact of life. For others, it’s a minor inconvenience. But for many, the condition is debilitating. Currently there is no cure. Thankfully, relief can come from a variety of treatments.


What Causes Tinnitus?

Tinnitus usually indicates an inner ear problem, but the mechanisms involved in tinnitus aren’t clear. There are many things, however, that result in tinnitus, such as hearing loss. Your provider will most likely look for:

  • Hearing loss
  • Damage to your auditory system
  • Jaw joint dysfunction (TMJ)
  • Chronic neck muscle strain
  • Excessive noise exposure
  • Certain medications
  • Wax buildup
  • Cardiovascular issues

Research is ongoing, and the mechanisms that create tinnitus in the brain and inner ear are being more closely studied all the time.


What Are the Different Types of Tinnitus?

Subjective tinnitus

This is the most common form of tinnitus, and exposure to excessive noise is often the culprit. The sound is only heard by the affected person. This type can appear and disappear suddenly. It can last a day or two, several weeks, months, or indefinitely.


Sensory tinnitus

This common type of tinnitus is usually a symptom of a disorder such as Meniere’s disease. These health problems affect the way your brain processes sound.


Somatic tinnitus

This type of tinnitus is related to movement and touch. Muscle spasms, a twist of the neck, and dental issues are all examples of somatic causes of tinnitus.


Objective tinnitus

This is a rare form of tinnitus caused by the circulatory or musculoskeletal system. This is the only form of tinnitus that can be heard by others. If the cause can be treated, the tinnitus usually stops entirely.


Notable Subtypes

  • Musical tinnitus: This type is less common. It’s also called musical hallucinations or auditory imagery. Simple tones or layers of tones join to recreate a melody or composition. Musical tinnitus is more prevalent in those with long-term hearing loss and tinnitus.
  • Pulsatile tinnitus: This is a rhythmic tinnitus that syncs up with the beat of your heart. It usually indicates a change of blood flow near your ear.
  • Low-frequency tinnitus: Perhaps the most confusing type of tinnitus – those with this type can’t tell whether the sound is being produced internally or externally. Often, the tones correspond to the two lowest octaves on a piano and are described as a humming, murmuring, rumbling, or deep droning. This type of noise seems to affect people most strongly.


What Are Some Common Tinnitus Treatments?

There are numerous treatment options, but effectiveness varies depending upon the type of tinnitus. Your provider will usually help you manage your tinnitus with strategies to make it less bothersome.

No single approach works for everyone, and there is no FDA-approved drug treatment, supplement, or herb proven to be any more effective than a placebo.

Behavioral strategies and sound-generating devices offer the best treatment results. Some of the most effective methods are:

  • Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT)
  • Tinnitus-retraining therapy
  • Masking
  • Biofeedback
  • Hearing aids

Hearing loss is very often accompanied by tinnitus. In fact, some researchers believe subjective tinnitus can only happen in the presence of hearing damage.

Hearing aids do ease tinnitus symptoms, but they’re not the only method. That’s why it’s essential to see a professional with years of experience creating solutions for tinnitus sufferers.

If you or a loved one experiences tinnitus, contact us today. We’ll be able to help you determine the next steps toward relief.

The History of Hearing Aids

The History of Hearing Aids

The History of Hearing Aids

Modern hearing technology is truly amazing. Some devices are so small they’re practically invisible, others are waterproof, and most have advanced features that allow you to stream music and phone calls directly to your ears. But how did we get here? Through thousands of years of scientific innovation! Take a walk through the halls of hearing aid history to learn more about the evolution of hearing technology.



Humans have been trying to cure hearing loss since at least 1550 BC. The condition is referenced in ancient Egyptian manuscripts, and later on, ancient Greeks and Romans offered their own remedies for deafness. These usually involved various medicinal concoctions and the occasional object inserted into the ear canal. Definitely not the recommended treatment these days!



By the 13th century, rudimentary hearing instruments were crafted from hollowed-out animal horns. Since they couldn’t amplify sound, they weren’t very effective, but funnel-shaped objects would serve as the dominant form of hearing aid for the next few centuries.



The first officially recognized hearing aid appeared in the 17th century. Known as ear trumpets, these devices worked the same way as animal horns – by funneling sound waves to the ear. They came in a variety of shapes, sizes, and materials.



Collapsible ear trumpets hit the scene in the 18th century, making hearing aids more portable. They were often custom made for specific people and were becoming more commonplace. By the 19th century, ear trumpets were being commercially produced alongside other hearing devices such as hearing fans and speaking tubes. Ludwig van Beethoven owned multiple custom ear trumpets and used them for years. They’re on display at the Beethoven Museum in Bonn, Germany.



Invention of the carbon microphone in 1878 led to the development of several electric hearing devices in the early 20th century. These devices helped amplify voices, which the listener would hear through a speaker held at their ear. They were large and unwieldy, but the door to modern hearing technology was open, and hearing aids would advance very quickly from then on.



Developments in vacuum-tube technology starting in the 1920s led to lower-voltage, battery-powered hearing devices that were still bulky but small enough to be worn on the body. Vacuum tubes vastly increased the amount of amplification available in hearing aids, making it possible to treat greater degrees of hearing loss.



Vacuum tubes were replaced by transistors in the mid-20th century, leading to pocket-sized, lighter-weight hearing aids. Amplification was still pretty basic and couldn’t yet be customized to the user’s hearing loss, but miniaturization meant that more people found hearing aids convenient enough to try.



The arrival of microprocessors in the 1970s miniaturized hearing aids even more, and wearable analog devices were common throughout the decade. They were simple and equally amplified all sounds – including potentially unwanted noise – but some could be programmed for different listening situations. Analog devices became hybrid devices, and finally, the first fully digital hearing aid was created at the City University of New York in 1982. It wouldn’t become a commercially available technology until the 1990s, but it was the breakthrough that led to the hearing aids we know


1990s-Present Day

1996 is the year hearing tech officially went digital. Improvements to their design and functionality made them more powerful and comfortable, and now these devices provide more sonic customization than ever before. Streaming, adjusting automatically to specific environments, filtering out background noise, and detecting falls are just some of the features you can expect in a contemporary hearing aid, and they’re continuing to evolve.

Excited about the marvels of current hearing technology? So are we, and we’d love to share the magic of better hearing with you! Contact us today for a demo of the latest hearing devices and see what hearing tech can do for you.

Q: How do I get the most out of a hearing evaluation?

Q: How do I get the most out of a hearing evaluation?

Q: How do I get the most out of a hearing evaluation?

A: You’re already off to an ideal start – it’s important to see a trained hearing professional. They’ll help you make safe, effective decisions about your hearing health. But let’s get to some specifics – keep the following in mind.


It’s More Than a Hearing Screening

Hearing care isn’t one-size-fits all. A simple hearing screening (“Can you hear this tone?”) is important, but it doesn’t reveal enough about your situation.

Hearing is complex, so your appointment is a comprehensive evaluation. And the more engaged you are in the process, the better your outcomes will be.


Trust That Each Test Has a Purpose

During your evaluation, your provider develops a comprehensive picture of your hearing health.


Possible Causes

It’s crucial to determine the cause of your hearing loss before any treatment plan can be developed. The cause could be simple (earwax buildup or debris), common (loud noise or aging), or complicated (disease or head trauma).


Physical Health

Your ear canal, eardrum, middle ear, and inner ear all need to function
correctly. If one of them doesn’t work as they should, a hearing aid is a
band-aid at best. It might even make things worse.


Speech Understanding

This is a huge piece of the hearing puzzle. You’ll test how well you understand speech in a quiet setting, but also how well you hear in increasing amounts of background noise.


Your Hearing Loss Is Unique

No two hearing losses are alike, and no two people have the same circumstances. Your hearing aids are customized and programmed to meet your specific needs. Hearing professionals are especially skilled in ensuring they’re right for you now and in the future.


You Might Have Other Conditions

Hearing loss is often accompanied by tinnitus (ringing in the ears) or balance issues. A hearing evaluation from a professional might help shed light on these other health care concerns. If your provider doesn’t specialize in these issues, they can certainly get you pointed in the right direction.


A Final Thought

As mentioned already, it’s great that you’re seeing a trained hearing professional. Recently, the U.S. FDA gave the go-ahead to manufacturers interested in selling over-the-counter (OTC) hearing aids. But as you can see, a lot happens at a hearing evaluation, and for a reason. Simply buying OTC hearing devices might end up masking a genuine health concern. Plus, an error in programming could make your hearing worse, not better.

If you’ve been wondering about your hearing lately,contact us today to schedule an appointment!

Tips to Help You Live Longer With Hearing Loss

Tips to Help You Live Longer With Hearing Loss

It’s Not Just About Hearing

Hearing loss can affect not only your well-being but your overall quality of life as well. If you have hearing loss, read on for ways to be the happiest, healthiest you.


Hearing Loss and Falls Are Linked

Research backs up the connection between hearing loss and falls. In one study, those with at least a mild hearing loss fell more often than those with healthy hearing. In fact, the odds of a fall increased as hearing loss worsened — falls were 1.4 times more likely for each 10-decibel increase in hearing loss.

One possible cause is that hearing loss robs your brain of resources. As more brainpower becomes devoted to hearing, less is available for postural control, which increases the risk of falling.

According to the National Council on Aging (NCOA):

  • Falling is the leading cause of fatal and nonfatal injuries for older Americans.
  • Falls threaten safety and independence, and they generate enormous economic and personal costs.
  • Falls result in more than 3 million injuries treated in emergency departments annually, including over 800,000 hospitalizations.


Hearing Technology Can Help

In a study from the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, Missouri, participants with hearing loss had better balance when using hearing aids than when they didn’t. Senior author Timothy E. Hullar explained they seemed to use “the sound information coming through their hearing aids as auditory reference points or landmarks to help maintain balance.”


Lifestyle and Hearing Are Linked

A study done by Age and Ageing looked at hearing loss alongside disability and mortality in older men. The study found that, compared with those with no hearing loss, those with hearing loss have a greater risk of mobility problems and difficulties when performing daily activities. It also found that men with hearing loss have a greater risk of dying of any cause.

In a different study, it was reported that hearing loss is 5.5 times more prevalent in men than in women. In particular, those with high blood pressure and diabetes, as well as smokers of more than 20 years, are more likely to have a hearing loss.


Hearing Technology Can Help

study done by the National Council on Aging found that people who used hearing aids reported an increased sense of independence and safety, as well as improvements in depression, anxiety, and social isolation compared with the time before they treated their hearing loss.


Nutrition Affects Your Hearing

Nutrients are a great first-line defense against hearing loss, especially folate and omega-3 fatty acids.

Folate, a B vitamin, helps prevent age-related hearing loss. It does this by regulating the amount of homocysteine (an amino acid) in your system. A lack of homocysteine reduces blood flow to the inner ear, resulting in hearing loss. Good sources of folate include broccoli, leafy green vegetables, pulses, and liver.

Omega-3 fatty acids are a building block of your cell membranes. They fight inflammation, too. These are two properties that make omega-3 fatty acids ideal protectors of hearing health, and research backs this up. It’s well established that omega-3 fatty acids do, indeed, prevent age-related hearing loss. Good sources of this nutrient are fish, nuts, seeds, plant oils, and fortified foods.


Hearing Technology Can Help

If you do have age-related hearing loss, it’s easy to miss out on children laughing in another room, birds chirping, or your sweetheart’s whispered “I love you.” It’s these little moments that make life so rich. But hearing technology is now so advanced that you can adjust your settings to your surroundings.


Don’t miss another moment — contact us today!

New Year’s Resolution: Tackle Tinnitus

New Year’s Resolution: Tackle Tinnitus

Tackle Tinnitus: Start 2023 Off Right by Telling the Ringing to Take a Hike

Tackle Tinnitus: Have you heard a bothersome buzzing, ringing, whooshing, or hissing that seems to hang around or come and go in your head or ears? You might have thought it was just your imagination. Or maybe it’s clear that it’s real, and you feel stuck with it.

Millions of people around the world experience tinnitus — as a chronic issue, it might impact 8% to 25% of the global population — but only a fraction of those affected take action. And for some, the problem can be debilitating, interfering with everyday activities.

If you’ve been putting off getting help, here are three reasons to seek relief in the new year.


1. Tinnitus Can Be Successfully Managed

Tinnitus can be addressed in ways that lessen its impact on your life. Effective treatment, which often depends on the underlying cause, can range from earwax removal, hearing technology, or sound devices, to medication adjustments, lifestyle changes, or interventions such as tinnitus rehabilitation or cognitive behavioral therapy.

Relief also could come in the form of habituation, in which the brain adapts to tinnitus such that symptoms don’t negatively affect your life. Sound therapy can be a big help in that approach. In some situations, surgery recommended to correct an underlying issue — an acoustic neuroma or benign tumor along a hearing nerve, for example — may help resolve tinnitus symptoms.


2.  It May Point to a Serious Underlying Issue

Tinnitus is more of a symptom than a condition. It can have a number of causes, including:

  • Earwax blockage
  • Some medications, such as antibiotics
  • Ear infections
  • Head injury
  • Dental problems
  • Barotrauma
  • Excess noise exposure
  • Blood vessel disorders


It also can go hand in hand with problems such as hearing loss or stress. A comprehensive evaluation can help you understand any underlying issues, work with the provider on a treatment plan, and follow up with any potential referral to a specialist if needed to address a medical matter contributing to the tinnitus.


3. You Deserve Good Health

In the bustle of life, it’s not uncommon to put health needs last. And though health-related goals often occupy one or more of the top spots in New Year’s resolutions, only 9% of resolvers follow through on their intentions.

So how can you take that first step toward more control over the sounds you hear? Visualize what freedom from tinnitus symptoms looks like in your life — at home, work, and play — and use that motivation to take action now. You deserve good health.


You don’t have to live with unwanted noises in your head or ears. Make 2023 the year you triumph over tinnitus. Relief can come in many options, but it starts with a professional evaluation. So don’t wait. Contact our caring team for more information today!

6 Hearing Trends for 2023

6 Hearing Trends for 2023

Keep Your Eye on These in the New Year

As an exciting new year nears, what can you expect in the world of hearing wellness? We’re taking a look at six trends to keep your eye on for 2023 and beyond.


1. Rechargeables

Aah, the convenience of rechargeability:

  • Less waste
  • Easy charge-and-go convenience
  • No fussing with spent disposable batteries that require removal and replacement

With an increasing number of hearing aid manufacturers offering rechargeable options for devices, it’s just a matter of time before they become the default. True, the smallest hearing aids that fit completely in the ear may not yet be widely available in rechargeable styles, but stay tuned. A breakthrough could be just around the corner!


2. Telehealth

The unprecedented global public-health challenges over the last couple years have called for adaption and innovation. An example: The rise of telehealth or video-based patient-provider appointments. Though not unheard of before the pandemic, telehealth rose in prominence as digital companies and others stepped up with apps and improved platforms to help keep health care accessible amid lockdowns, quarantines, and distancing.

One federal study of Medicare health care access showed a significant increase in patient telehealth participation during the pandemic — from an estimated 840,000 in 2019 to over 52 million in 2020. Overall, telehealth use has jumped 38-fold from pre-COVID rates. And with consumers and the industry embracing it even more as an additional option for effective patient-provider engagement, it’s here to stay.


3. OTCs

You may have heard about over-the-counter (OTC) hearing technology, a new class of devices in the U.S. regulated by the Federal Drug Administration and approved for those 18 and older with perceived mild to moderate hearing loss. OTCs are expected to soon join the market, representing a new option for some consumers exploring their hearing-health needs.

The good news? OTCs could spur more people to consider seeking help for hearing loss — a growing global problem expected to impact some 700 million children and adults by 2050. However, self-treating for hearing issues rather than seeking help from licensed hearing care professionals can lead to under- or overtreatment, making it important to get a comprehensive evaluation before deciding on solutions.


4. Noise-Induced Hearing Loss

Speaking of a growing global problem: Excess noise is one of the culprits behind an increasing risk of hearing loss among people ranging from preteens to mid-30s. Why? Popular activities such as using personal media players, hitting the club, enjoying a game at the sports arena, and rocking out at concerts can be lots of fun while also being hard on the ears — especially at noise levels beyond the danger threshold of 85 decibels.


Noise exposure is one of the most preventable causes of hearing loss. A few simple steps can help keep this harmful trend from gaining any more stream:

  • Limiting the amount of time exposed to loud sounds
  • Wearing quality hearing protection customized to your ears
  • Turning the volume down on personal audio devices
  • Staying atop your hearing health with annual evaluations


5. Connectivity

Whether streaming TV audio, jazz tunes, telephone calls, or your favorite morning-show radio duo, being able to channel sounds right to your hearing aids is pretty terrific. Essentially acting as headphones, the hearing devices make it easy to lean into the sounds you love — wirelessly. Plus, compatible apps make it a cinch to control your hearing technology right from your smartphone.

But let’s talk about the next level of connectivity. Imagine, for example, being able to directly surf the web, control access to your home, get instant ambient-temperature information, or turn off an appliance with your hearing device. Though these possibilities may not happen in the immediate future, the world of hearing-technology connectivity is always expanding to exciting new heights.


6. Artificial Intelligence

Netflix suggests movies you might love. Your household thermostat chooses a comfy temperature, without even needing to be programmed. Your smartphone accurately finishes your sentences before you’ve typed the words. Machine learning, a category of artificial intelligence (AI), is becoming the norm of everyday life, and we’re here for the ways it can support your health.

AI will increasingly play a role in hearing aid functionality, contributing to greater convenience and empowerment for users. One line of hearing aids already can track brain and body health, detect falls, and translate other languages in real time to help bust communication barriers. Look for even more AI capabilities as technology continues to evolve.


Hearing technology is always progressing to help you stay healthy, engaged, and connected with the people and activities that matter in your life. We’d love to show you the latest innovations, so don’t wait. Contact our caring team to schedule a test-drive today.