Tag: tips

6 Ways to Keep Your Hearing Loss From Getting Worse

6 Ways to Keep Your Hearing Loss From Getting Worse

6 Ways to Keep Your Hearing Loss From Getting Worse

Looking Out for Your Hearing Health Is Even Easier Than You Think

If you have hearing loss, you’re not alone. With an estimated 466 million children and adults living with disabling hearing loss, per the World Health Organization, it’s one of the most common chronic physical conditions around the globe.

Though most types of hearing loss cannot be reversed, they can often be successfully managed with today’s innovative technology. And there are empowering ways you can keep your hearing loss from getting worse. Read on for six tips to do just that.

  • Avoid Noisy Environments

Among the most preventable causes of hearing loss, harmful noise levels — especially those reaching 85 decibels or higher — can do a number on your ears. The damage could be temporary or permanent. And it can worsen with greater noise exposure. When possible, avoiding harmful noise levels altogether is the best bet.

  • Wear Hearing Protection

Of course, avoiding excess noise isn’t always practical — especially if it’s part of your occupation. Whether you’re working around jet engines, calling games amid the whistles and cheers of a packed arena, or operating machinery at a farm, workplaces can be loud. That’s where hearing protection comes in. We recommend custom protection for even more effectiveness and a secure fit.

  • Address Earwax Buildup

Excess cerumen, or earwax buildup, can also be the culprit in worsening hearing loss. Typically your ears naturally push out excess wax, but sometimes the accumulation can form a blockage. To remove an earwax plug, gently soften it with drops of warmed olive oil, almond oil water, or a commercial solution — as long as you don’t have an eardrum perforation.

  • Beware of Ototoxicity

Some medications, including certain drugs used to fight cancer, can be ototoxic, or damaging to the inner ear, potentially leading to hearing loss or worsening of existing hearing difficulties. Rather than stopping the medication if prescribed, talk to your doctor or another provider about the risks, potential alternatives, and possible ways to mitigate any threats to your hearing.

  • Think Total Wellness

It’s easy to think of hearing loss as just an isolated challenge, but it can go hand in hand with other conditions, such as heart disease, kidney disease, diabetes, dementia, and other health problems. Though cause and effect aren’t necessarily conclusive in all cases of hearing loss, staying dedicated to total wellness can potentially go a long way toward helping preserve your current hearing levels.

  • Lean Into Technology

As mentioned early in this story, today’s exciting, advanced technology plays a big role in successfully managing hearing loss. With the help of a licensed hearing care professional and solutions tailored to your needs, you can discover a whole new world of sound. Using hearing technology also helps you preserve the hearing you have.

So don’t wait. Take steps to preserve your hearing today. If it’s been a while since your last hearing check, or your current hearing devices don’t seem to help as much as they used to, contact us for an evaluation. We’re committed to helping you hear your best!

8 Back-to-School Communication Tips

Make Hitting the Books Even Easier With These Helpful Tricks

It’s practically back-to-school time! Whether the students in your life are heading back to class in person or online, keep these helpful tips in mind.

  1. Maximize lipreading. Hearing and lipreading work together to enhance communication, making clear masks an important tool for teachers if using protective equipment for in-person learning. It also helps for speakers to appear on camera during virtual classes so that participants can see their lips.
  2. Turn on live captioning during virtual lessons, or ask the host — if applicable — to activate the option. Free apps and web-based services are also available for live transcribing of speech.
  3. Curb background noise. Learning from home can be challenging amid the everyday sounds of household life, but setting up in a quieter room, wearing connected headphones, and closing the door to shut out distracting background noise can help facilitate speech understanding.
  4. Use the chat function — if available when using an online virtual platform — to help clarify any missed points. And remember: There’s a good chance others may need clarification, too, and will appreciate the request.
  5. Pair a compatible wireless multimicrophone with your hearing device to enhance hearing in one-on-one and group environments.
  6. Stream audio directly to your hearing technology. Modern hearing aids can receive audio directly from sources such as smartphones, computers, stereos, and more — depending on compatibility — and make it easy to personalize sound for specific listening and learning needs.
  7. Help your hearing aids and mask coexist. If wearing hearing aids, help keep them undisturbed and working their best by choosing masks that wrap around the head rather than the ears.
  8. Choose the mask setting on your hearing aids — if the option is available — to help clearly and confidently communicate with others who are wearing face coverings.

 

How’s Their Hearing?

Schedule regular hearing checkups for the schoolkids in your household — just as you would for their eyes and teeth — and recognize some of the signs of potential hearing loss:

  • Struggling to understand people speaking through masks
  • Trouble following lessons or instructions from teachers
  • Frequent responses of “Huh?” or “What?”
  • Complaints of noise or earaches
  • Turning up the television volume
  • Failing grades or reports that your child doesn’t respond in class
  • A gut feeling that something’s off with your child’s hearing

Improved hearing can play a big role in helping students perform their best in class. So don’t wait. Schedule back-to-school hearing evaluations for the whole family today!

Man in hospital bed takes care of his hearing aids

8 Hearing Aid Tips for Hospital Stays

Checking into a hospital can seem a little stressful, making it all the more important to feel empowered, alert, and engaged with the help of your hearing aids. Help protect them during your inpatient visit with these handy tips.

It can be easy to lose track of your hearing aids when getting inpatient care at a busy medical facility, so weíre sharing eight tips to help you protect your tech and continue hearing your best.

  1. Use a Container
    Keep a personally labeled container on the nightstand for your hearing aids when not in use. And remember: Hearing-aid dryers and dehumidifiers can double as storage, too!
  2. Bypass the Food Tray
    It might seem convenient to set your hearing devices on your food tray, but they can get damaged or lost that way. Better to keep them in their designated container.
  3. Take Them Out
    If staff comes to change the bedsheets and youíre unable to get out of bed, remove your hearing devices so they donít fall off in the linens and get discarded.
  4. Skip the Pockets
    Pockets seem naturally convenient for storing hearing aids, but not so fast! Your devices could become forgotten there and end up being tossed into the washing machine and damaged.
  5. Give the Batteries a Break
    Remember at night to remove the batteries from your hearing devices and leave the battery door open, helping reduce moisture and maximize battery life.
  6. Enlist Family Support
    Consider not keeping your hearing aids with you and instead having friends or family bring them when coming to visit, if thatís feasible.
  7. Share Your Concerns
    Make sure your medical team is aware if you have a significant hearing loss, and tell your doctor if youíre concerned about being able to hear just before surgery or in recovery.
  8. Think Ahead
    Inpatient facilities typically donít assume responsibility for lost hearing aids, glasses, or dentures, so provide a checklist to loved ones who can help you keep these critical items safe and sound.

Communicating on your terms means keeping your hearing technology safe, sound, and ready when you need it. For more tips on protecting or maintaining your devices, please donít wait. Contact our caring team today. Weíre here to help!

Celebrate Better Hearing With Our 5 Ways to Support Your Hearing Health

The whir of a hummingbird. The warning of an approaching ambulance. The round of laughter after your deviously funny ó and deftly delivered ó wedding toast. That sublime guitar riff or soulful crescendo in your favorite song.

As we celebrate Better Hearing & Speech Month in May ó and the theme, ìCommunication for Allî ó itís a great time to remember the many ways hearing makes a difference in your life. And to help you maintain those connections that matter, weíre sharing five easy tips for hearing your best.

  1. Know the Signs

    More than 466 million children and adults have disabling hearing impairment, according to the World Health Organization, but nearly all hearing loss can be treated. One of the first steps is recognizing the potential signs. If you experience muffled speech sounds, difficulty hearing on the phone or in a crowd, trouble understanding womenís or childrenís voices, or complaints from loved ones about your TV or radio volume, consider a professional hearing test.

  2. Curb the Noise

    Did you know? Noise-induced hearing loss ó a largely preventable public-health problem ó affects children and adults and is on the rise, according to the Hearing Health Foundation. Whether rocking out at a summer concert, enjoying New Year fireworks, or using power tools, consider limiting the duration of your noise exposure and wearing quality hearing protection.

  3. Hold the Swabs

    If you like the feeling of a cotton swab rubbed in your ear, youíre not alone. Itís a common habit but, oh, so dangerous. Sticking objects in your ear can cause injury and push earwax farther into the ear canal. To remove excess cerumen, use a warm soft cloth after washing or showering, or soften the wax with drops of warmed olive oil, water, or a commercial solution ó as long as you donít have a perforated eardrum. In cases of persistent ear pain, hearing loss, or blockage of the ear canal, contact us for a professional evaluation.

  4. Bring on the Bananas

    Healthy eating offers endless benefits, including better hearing wellness, so consider selected fruits, vegetables, legumes, and other key foods that can make a difference. Bananas, for example, pack potassium, which plays a role in regulating the inner-ear fluid crucial to healthy hearing. Look for foods rich in vitamins and minerals such as A, C, E, folate, magnesium, and zinc, too.

  5. Schedule Regular Checkups

    Itís easy to make better hearing a family affair by scheduling hearing evaluations for the whole household. How often? At least once a year, just as you would for your eyes or teeth. Staying atop your hearing health helps catch any potential changes or problems early, which is important for overall wellness.

At [practice-name], weíre here to help you and your loved ones hear your best during Better Hearing & Speech Month and beyond. Keep our five easy tips in mind, and contact our caring team for your next hearing check!

Did you know? Exercise can also help prevent hearing impairment

Making Moves for Hearing Health

Search Top 10 New Years resolutionsî and what are you sure to find? Lists that often start with ìfitnessî or exercise. With benefits from better skin and stronger bones to weight loss, improved mental health, and more, itís no wonder that exercise pops up as a perennial New Yearís resolution favorite!

But did you know? Exercise can also help prevent hearing impairment.

So if you or your loved ones are kicking off the new year with physical fitness goals in sight, keep in mind these four tips for better hearing health:

1. Exercise May Delay Age-Related Hearing Loss

An estimated one of every three adults between ages 65 and 74 lives with hearing impairment, per the National Institute on Deafness and Communication Disorders, making it a common health challenge among seniors. Research, however, shows that exercise can stave off age-related hearing loss (AHL). One relatively recent study using mice, for example, found that ìregular exercise slowed AHLî and deterioration of the cochlea, the part of the inner ear that detects sound.

2. What Helps Your Heart Helps Your Ears

People with heart disease, a leading cause of death worldwide, are 54 percent more likely to experience hearing loss. Research shows, however, that individuals entering their 50s with good cardiovascular health have better hearing than their counterparts with poor cardiovascular fitness. Just ì30 minutes a day, five times a weekî of moderate or vigorous exercise can help cut the risk of heart disease, per the American Heart Association, and it doesnít have to be hard: ìThe simplest positive change you can make to effectively improve your heart health is to start walking.

3. Brainpower Is Hearing Power

Ears are vital to hearing, but the brain does the heavy lifting ó recognizing sound, using ears to help orient the body, and separating desired sounds from competing noise. Studies show that exercise supports brain health. Wrote Harvard Health Blogís executive editor: ìThe benefits of exercise come directly from its ability to reduce insulin resistance, reduce inflammation, and stimulate the release of growth factors ó chemicals in the brain that affect the health of brain cells, the growth of new blood vessels in the brain, and even the abundance and survival of new brain cells.

4. Less Noise Makes a Big Difference

Whether kickboxing to the latest beats at the gym or hitting the walking trail with your MP3 player, getting the most out of a hearing-healthy workout includes protecting your ears from excess noise ó the most preventable cause of hearing loss. Wear quality earplugs and keep a good distance from speakers in group exercise classes, where music volumes can reach well above the danger threshold of 85 decibels. If using an MP3 player or other personal music device, remember to turn it at least halfway down or lower from full volume.


What are your goals for better hearing and wellness this year? At [practice-name], weíre here to help you achieve them! Contact us to schedule a hearing exam or a clean and check of your hearing aids today

8 Tips That Preserve Your Technology and Protect Your Hearing

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Thanks to hearing aids, people are able to engage in more activities each holiday season. Protect your technology with these eight tips and tricks specifically created for a winter full of festivities and fun.

1. TEMPERATURE CHANGE.
Moisture from a drastic change in temperature (like walking into your cozy home from a chilly outdoor adventure) can damage hearing aids and shorten battery life. Earmuffs, a hat, or an umbrella will help prevent unwanted moisture from getting in.

2. WATER-RESISTANT TECHNOLOGY.
If you lead an active lifestyle through the seasons, consider choosing water-resistant (note that these are not waterproof) hearing aids. These devices have a coating that protects them from perspiration and water drops.

3. MAKE SURE YOU’RE COVERED.
Behind-the ear hearing aids are at risk for damage due to the humidity from sweat. Ask us about hearing aid protection to reduce exposure to moisture, dirt, and dust.

4. HIGH AND DRY.
Hearing aid dehumidifiers rid your technology of moisture overnight so they’re ready to go in the morning. Use this handy tool all year round to help extend the life of your technology.

5. DON’T BLOW IT.
Snowblowers are estimated to range from 90 to 106 decibels (hearing damage starts at 85 decibels, or the sound level of a bulldozer). The longer you’re exposed to this noise, the greater your risk for hearing damage. Make sure you adjust the volume settings on your devices, or pick up a pair of decibel-reducing earmuffs.

6. SOAKED, NOT SUNK.
If your hearing aid has gotten wet, remove the batteries immediately, store the hearing aid in a dry-aid kit or dehumidifier, and contact us to find out if other steps should be taken.

7. CAN’T STOP, WON’T STOP.
Keep your batteries (and hearing aids) in tip-top shape by keeping them away from excessive temperatures. To help ensure your batteries perform efficiently, leave the battery door open at night or whenever you’re not using them.

8. SAFETY FIRST.
When snow hits the ground, the fun outdoor activities begin. Risking damage to or loss of your hearing aids in the snow is not so entertaining. To keep the fun and your technology going, ask about adjustable retention products for hearing devices.
Have questions about any of the tips or devices mentioned? Well, we’ve got answers! Give us a call at 918.333.9992 so we can help you have the happiest, healthiest hearing this winter! You can also call us to schedule a free clean and check, and receive $500 off AGX5, 7, or 9 technology!