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Hearing Loss

Hearing Loss: A Worker’s Nightmare

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Headphones Can Easily Damage Your Hearing Permanently

Last month we told you how hearing loss is on the rise. One of the reasons for this is because of noise-induced hearing loss. Headphones and especially earbuds are used much more now than ever and when the music or entertainment you play using headphones is too loud, it can cause permanent damage to your hearing. Today, we have some information to help you ensure that you won’t look back on your time spent using headphones with regret.

Why Loud Headphones Can Damage Your Hearing

Tricia Ashby, the Director of Audiology at the American Speech-Language Hearing Association (ASHA) explains, “Noise exposure is a common cause of hearing loss”. Noise-induced hearing loss isn’t only caused by listening to headphones but as it becomes a more common practice, it is a growing concern. Loud noise causes the fluid in your inner ear to move and that can damage the hair cells that help you hear by sending signals to the brain. You may not recognize hearing damage right away because hearing loss is often a gradual process; in addition to that the exposure is cumulative. Which means that the more often you are exposed to loud noises, the more of an impact it has on your hearing.

How Loud is Too Loud?

None of this means that you can’t listen to music through headphones, it just means you have to keep the volume down and limit the time you spend using headphones. The World Health Organization recommends limiting headphone time to one hour per day and keep the volume around 60%, or 60 decibels. It is also important to recognize the headphones are not all bad for your hearing health. In fact, according to Kathleen Campbell, professor at Southern Illinois School of Medicine who specializes in audiology explains how over-ear or noise-canceling headphones are the best choice because they encourage people to listen at a lower volume. Think about your future the next time you decide to turn up the volume on your headphones, it could mean losing the ability to hear through them in the future.

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.

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Sudden Onset Hearing Loss – What Can You Do About It?

Sudden onset hearing loss is also called sudden deafness or sudden sensorineural hearing loss (SSHL). It often happens as quickly as overnight or over the course of a few days. In most cases, sudden hearing loss is only present in one ear and is almost complete hearing loss in that ear. It can often be accompanied by ringing of ears (tinnitus) and dizziness or disorientation. We should mention that sudden onset hearing loss is not very common. If this happens to you, seek help right away and consider it an emergency.

What Causes Sudden Onset Hearing Loss?

According to the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD) the causes of sudden onset hearing loss can include:

  • Infectious diseases
  • Trauma, such as a head injury
  • Autoimmune diseases such as Cogan’s syndrome
  • Ototoxic drugs (drugs that harm the sensory cells in the inner ear)
  • Blood circulation problems
  • A tumor on the nerve that connects the ear to the brain
  • Neurologic diseases and disorders, such as multiple sclerosis
  • Disorders of the inner ear, such as Ménière’s disease

Sudden onset hearing loss can be diagnosed by a doctor or audiologist with a hearing assessment. You should help them recount your hearing loss and bring a list of all medications and medical history with you. Only a medical professional can determine the cause and outline a treatment plan to help you. In some cases, a blood analysis will be necessary to help with the diagnosis.

Treatment for Sudden Onset Hearing Loss

For the most part and depending on the cause, sudden onset hearing loss can be treated and have a good prognosis to recover some hearing. Getting treatment as soon as possible helps improve the chances of recovery. As with any ailment, the treatment depends on the cause. The most common treatment is corticosteroids which reduce inflammation and help your body fight off illness. Antibiotics would be the treatment if the sudden hearing loss is caused by an infection. You should discuss your individual situation with your doctor or audiologist.

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.

Posted by Admin

Hearing Loss: A Worker’s Nightmare

Hearing loss in the workplace is not only frustrating for the employee who suffers from the debilitating condition, but also for all that person’s unassuming co-workers. Let’s face it: being in a fast paced workplace is stressful on its own! Add in hearing loss (whether your own or an office mate’s) and that stress can lead to large amounts of anxiety and strained times on the job.

“No one in my office has hearing loss! They just don’t want to do work!”

In an EPIC Hearing Healthcare study…

• 40% of employees said they have had to pretend that they heard something a co-worker has stated.
• 42% of employees said they often experience miscommunication between others at work.
• 57% of employees said they frequently have to strain to hear a conversation due to background noise.
• 61% of employees have had to ask a co-worker to repeat themselves while in conversation.
• Out of 2000 workers surveyed by EPIC Hearing Healthcare, 95% said that untreated hearing loss has a negative impact on their job.

2,000 workers were surveyed in this study and their overall finding was staggering! 95% of those workers said that untreated hearing loss has had a negative impact on their job. Whether it was their own loss or that of a co-worker, the result was detrimental to their experience on the job.

“95%! What can I do?”

Treating hearing loss means a world of a difference in all aspects of your life. But the benefits can be very rewarding while on the job. All too often, people speak over each other or mumble in office discussions which makes it hard to always hear and comprehend. For those who may even have mild hearing loss, this can be a burden that could be avoided.

Treating your hearing loss (even in the slightest) can mean better job performance, leading to an overall improvement in happiness. The results may also improve production in the work place. Who knew that getting your ears checked could make your boss smile? But new research suggests that miscommunication is one of the largest factors in profit-and-loss in the workplace. So, that smile is just one result of you taking care of you auditory health. Increase your chances of being a top performer at work by improving your communication skills!

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Tinnitus Types

There are two clinically differentiated types of tinnitus: subjective tinnitus and objective tinnitus. Out of all of the tinnitus cases reported, 99% of those cases fall within the subjective tinnitus category, making subjective tinnitus the more common of the two types.

What is subjective tinnitus?

Subjective tinnitus is defined as perceiving sound when there is no acoustic source present. In the absence of any auditory stimuli, a person experiencing subjective tinnitus may hear a diverse range of sounds – from a ringing to a whistling to a buzzing – either in one ear or both ears. Due to the fact that there is no acoustic source, subjective tinnitus can only be heard by the person perceiving the sound.

Within the subjective tinnitus type, there are two additional categories – primary and secondary tinnitus. Primary tinnitus occurs more frequently and is characterized as tinnitus that is a result of hearing loss or accompanied by hearing loss. Secondary tinnitus is provoked by a specific cause that is unrelated to hearing loss or auditory issues, such as certain medications or underlying medical conditions.

Understanding objective tinnitus

Objective tinnitus is defined as the perception of sounds that are caused by internal structures. Because the sound is actually being generated by an acoustic source, a doctor or hearing care specialist is able to hear what the patient is hearing by inserting a small microphone into the ear canal or placing a stethoscope or other listening device on the patient’s neck or surrounding area.

Problems in a person’s cardiovascular and circulatory systems are generally the cause of objective tinnitus. Irregularities in the passage of blood flowing through arteries and veins in the head or neck may result in discernible thumping or whooshing noises. Muscle spasms and structural problems within the inner ear and brain may also cause objective tinnitus.

Pulsatile tinnitus: a certain type of objective tinnitus

A specific form of objective tinnitus is pulsatile tinnitus – the perception of pulsing noises that sound similar to a heartbeat. This rhythmic throbbing can often be heard in time with a person’s actual pulse and is generally symptomatic of cardiovascular issues.

If you or someone you love is experiencing tinnitus-like symptoms, the first step is to speak with a hearing care specialist and have an assessment*. Schedule an appointment with a hearing care professional.

Posted by Admin

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