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Hearing Loss

5 Ways Hearing Loss Can Affect You

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5 Reasons to be Thankful for Hearing Aids

This time of the year when we count our blessings and think about what we are thankful for, good hearing and hearing aids certainly top the list for anyone who has experienced a hearing impairment. However, there are more benefits from hearing aids beyond better hearing. Here are 5 reasons to be thankful for your hearing aids.

  1. Cutting-edge hearing aid technology. The high tech hearing aids of today allow you to connect to the world around you. The hearing aids available now are sophisticated pieces of technology. We describe them as mini computers that are professionally calibrated to your hearing needs.
  2. Better communication with loved ones. This is a benefit of hearing aids that people with hearing loss generally won’t realize until they begin hearing better again. During the holidays, what can be better than communicating better with your family and friends?
  3. Increased earning potential. The Better Hearing Institute has done research on the correlation between hearing loss and earning potential. Their study results show that untreated hearing loss can reduce annual earnings by as much as $30,000. However, when hearing aids are implemented the risk of decreased earnings was reduced up to 90%.
  4. Less tired feeling. People who suffer from hearing loss can also often experience listening fatigue. Since hearing is a process of the brain, when your ears do not hear well, your brain has to work harder to try to process and translate the sounds. This can often lead to always feeling tired; but hearing aids eliminate listening fatigue.
  5. Feeling more secure and independent. Once hearing aids are part of your life, you almost immediately realize how you can become independent again. The feeling of confidence is pretty indescribable when you no longer have to look for your “translators” to help you understand what is being said all the time.

Hearing Help Associates, Helping New Yorkers Hear Well Again

At Hearing Help Associates, we are always here to help you through all aspects of your hearing health. If you have any questions about hearing loss or hearing aids, please contact us  to schedule an appointment  with one of our hearing professionals today. We have 6 convenient audiology clinic locations for you in Long Island, NY: Babylon, Bayside, Bellmore, Great Neck, Jericho, and Rockville.

Posted by Admin

Did You Know? Healthy Eating Can Prevent Hearing Loss

There are many different reasons why one chooses to maintain a healthy diet. Now, you can add good hearing to the list. There have been two different long-term clinical studies which both show how a healthy diet indirectly prevents hearing loss. Since a healthy diet helps improve circulation, reduces inflammation, and can prevent heart disease and diabetes, it also helps prevent hearing loss since those health problems can cause it.

Clinical Studies Present Reasons for Healthy Eating

The clinical studies performed show that healthy eating should start in your youth; but, it is never too late to develop this good habit. A study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition revealed that young adults who had poor nutrition were twice as likely to have hearing loss than other children. The study included 4,765 children who were younger than 5 years old at the baseline visit in 1989. These children were followed in subsequent years and at the conclusion of the study, for participants who did not have healthy eating habits, evidence was found of up to a 2.2-fold increased risk of early-adult hearing loss as a result of early childhood stunting or low BMI, as well as an increased risk of fluid in the ear.

A second study involving women and their dietary patterns was published in the Journal of Nutrition earlier this year. It showed that women whose nutritional intake more closely resembled one of three healthy diets had a 30% lower risk of developing hearing loss. The three diets examined were:

  1. The Alternate Mediterranean Diet (AMED) featuring extra virgin olive oil, grains, legumes, vegetables, fruits, nuts, fish and a moderate intake of alcohol.
  2. The Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) which emphasizes fruits and vegetables and low-fat dairy, while restricting salt.
  3. The Alternative Healthy Eating Index – 2010 (AHEI-2010), which measures diet quality to assess how well a set of foods align with key recommendations.

It is important to note that the hearing loss is not directly correlated to eating patterns, but that the health problems associated with poor diet are more likely to be the cause of the hearing loss than the diets themselves. This is just one more reason to load up on fresh foods and make good food choices as often as possible.

Hearing Help Associates, Helping New Yorkers Hear Well Again

At Hearing Help Associates, we are always here to help you through all aspects of your hearing health. If you have any questions about hearing loss or hearing aids, please contact us  to schedule an appointment  with one of our hearing professionals today. We have 6 convenient audiology clinic locations for you in Long Island, NY including: Babylon, Bayside, Bellmore, Great Neck, Jericho, and Rockville.

Posted by Admin

Why bring someone to a hearing test?

Recently, I made an appointment for my father’s hearing assessment with a local audiologist. The woman who confirmed the appointment reminded me that he needed to bring someone to the hearing test. It may seem like an unusual request, but bringing someone to a hearing test can help ensure a higher-quality outcome. It’s best to bring the person who speaks with him most to take part in the familiar voice test. So, last Thursday I joined my dad at the audiologist’s office and I’m so glad I went.

Helping Dad hear better means helping myself

Before I even called, Dad was already a bit reluctant to address his hearing loss. He had a lot of denial about how much he was missing. At 93 years old, he had survived a lifetime without hearing aids, but as his daughter I was tired of constantly having to repeat things, and explain what doctors, friends and even my kids say. Finally, I insisted that he get a free hearing assessment* and eventually he agreed to see what the audiologist had to say.

A hearing assessment starts with a conversation with the audiologist

As expected, the hearing assessment began with the audiologist asking routine questions about Dad’s health. He asked about how well Dad hears in various situations. It seemed the audiologist was not only trying to learn what his needs may be, but also how well Dad could follow along a discussion in a quiet space. 

In the booth

After our talk, the audiologist invited Dad to sit in a booth and listen to tones at different frequencies and volumes. Dad was asked to indicate when he heard something. From my vantage point (outside the booth), I could see the audiologist press buttons, which my Dad didn’t hear. As soon as it was finished, the audiologist explained what the audiogram indicated. As with many older seniors, Dad had below-normal hearing across all frequencies, but he had the most difficulty with higher-pitched sounds. Dad was a bit disappointed to see the results, but I don’t think he was surprised.

The audiologist explained the audiogram key to explain the results. The audiogram showed the conclusions of both the air conduction and bone conduction hearing tests. 

My part in a familiar voice hearing test

A familiar voice hearing test is the main reason to bring someone to a hearing test. It provides a chance for a hearing care provider to see how well an individual understands words spoken by someone close to them. This was when the family member or close friend takes a more active role in the appointment. The audiologist asked me to step into the hallway, about eight feet from where my Dad was sitting. 

Can you hear me now?

As I stood a short distance away, the audiologist asked me to read a list of high-frequency words and have my Dad repeat them.

I said, “pail.”

Dad said, “nail.”

I said, “face.” 

Dad said, “late.”

And so on. It was quite fun to see what I had suspected. His score wasn’t great. Without a hearing aid, Dad only heard three out of ten words correctly. When he heard the outcome, Dad was even more disappointed than with the audiogram. He couldn’t deny it. He couldn’t hear me speaking to him only a few steps away. The audiologist, my Dad and I all witnessed it. 

Getting a different result: a familiar voice hearing test with hearing aids

I have to admit I was feeling a bit vindicated. I’ve been complaining that my father can’t hear me for years. The audiologist popped fresh batteries in a pair of behind-the-ear hearing aids and had him try them on. They were light and comfortable, and a slightly beige color that matched my dad’s coloring. The audiologist asked me to go back into the hallway and repeat the test. 

I said, “cup.”

Dad said, “cup.”

I said, “peach.” 

Dad said, “peach.”

I said, “pew.”

Dad said, “few.”

This time, Dad heard 7 out of 10 words. It was a vast improvement. He was very pleased. 

Another familiar voice hearing test…

With my dad still wearing the hearing aids, the audiologist asked me to walk down the hallway, about 15 or 20 feet away. The audiologist turned off the hearing aids. He asked me to speak in a normal volume and talk about what we were planning to have for dinner. Dad didn’t notice that I’d said anything at all. Once he turned the hearing aids back on, I repeated that I was planning go to the grocery store, and then we would have chicken for dinner. This time Dad heard and repeated every word.  

Why bring someone to a hearing test? Because hearing loved ones matters

My dad lives with me. He is accustomed to the cadence of my voice. Without even thinking about it, he knows that my vowels sound a certain way. Across the United States, we have a variety of regional accents. Even people who grow up in the same town may use different intonations. With familiar voice testing, it is easier for the individual to understand speech in a familiar voice test. 

Next steps: getting a hearing aid and getting used to it

Even experiencing firsthand how well hearing aids improved his ability to understand a conversation and hear people speaking from afar, my 93 year old is very set in his ways. So, I gave a gentle push. 

Improving a senior’s quality of life

For 93 years old, Dad is in incredible shape. He has many activities where hearing well would improve his quality of life. He enjoys playing piano, eating in restaurants, watching Perry Mason and NOVA on TV, and, of course, spending time with family. All of these things would be easier if he could hear better. It wasn’t until I mentioned that he should be able to hear the announcer during soccer matches that he finally agreed that hearing aids would improve his quality of life.

I can’t wait until his new hearing aids arrive. After years of watching him miss a lot of the conversation at family dinners, I’m pleased he’s finally taking the opportunity to hear better. At 93, it might be an big adjustment for him, but after a few weeks he may wonder how he survived decades without hearing aids.

It might be time to book their appointment. Then you can enjoy it when they are asked to bring someone to their free hearing assessment.*

Remember: The purpose of this hearing assessment and/or demonstration is for hearing wellness to determine if the patient(s) may benefit from using hearing aids. Products demonstrated may differ from products sold. Test conclusion may not be a medical diagnosis. The use of any hearing aid may not fully restore normal hearing and does not prevent future hearing loss. Testing is to evaluate your hearing wellness, which may include selling and fitting hearing aids. Hearing instruments may not meet the needs of all hearing-impaired individuals.

Posted by Admin

Putting Off Hearing Aids Can Impact Your Quality of Life

If you already know that you have hearing loss, then it wouldn’t be any surprise that it affects your quality of life. However, many people don’t even realize that they have hearing loss and that is what is causing their communication issues that happen with various people every day. A recent article from vaildaily.com explains that in many cases, getting a better understanding of hearing loss can help people make those first steps towards doing something about it and getting a hearing assessment.

Facts About Hearing Loss

When people with hearing loss learn of how prevalent hearing loss is, it often puts them at east and convinces them to do something about it. Consider these facts from the Hearing Loss Association of America:

  • 48 million adults (20% of Americans) report some degree of hearing loss.
  • Hearing loss is the 3rd most common ailment. It follows heart disease and arthritis.

There are 4 levels of hearing loss:

  1. Mild hearing loss
  2. Moderate hearing loss
  3. Severe hearing loss
  4. Profound hearing loss

Unintended Consequences of Hearing Loss

Hearing loss is almost always something that happens gradually over time. As a result, most people don’t recognize it since it is something they slowly get used to little by little. In addition to that, it seems that many do not seek treatment because of misconceptions or a stigma associated with hearing loss. When hearing loss goes untreated, there are many unintended consequences that can impact your daily quality of life. Communication is such a vital part of life and it is greatly compromised when one can’t hear well. It makes interactions with others strained, difficult, and even awkward.

Breaking the Hearing Loss Stigma and Dispelling Myths

Hearing is often thought of as something that only affects “old people” and hearing aids of old have given them a bad reputation. However, hearing loss affects anyone, no matter the age and is even becoming more prevalent among younger generations due to noise-induced hearing loss. The latest hearing aid models are not what you might have grown up thinking they are. They don’t whistle or make hearing worse. Instead, they are highly sophisticated devices that can help you hear, even in the most challenging situations and can connect to other technology and entertainment devices too.

Hearing Help Associates, Helping New Yorkers Hear Well Again

At Hearing Help Associates, we are always here to help you through all aspects of your hearing health. If you have any questions about hearing loss or hearing aids, please contact us  to schedule an appointment  with one of our hearing professionals today. We have 6 convenient audiology clinic locations for you in Long Island, NY including: Babylon, Bayside, Bellmore, Great Neck, Jericho, and Rockville.

Posted by Admin

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